MARTIN Demichelis seized a point for Barclays Premier League champions Manchester City with a late headed equaliser at the Emirates .
Scorers: Arsenal - Wilshere 63; Sanchez 74; Manchester City - Aguero 28; Dimichelis 83
Arsenal were on track for victory after man of the match Jack Wilshere inspired a second-half fightback, firing a wonderful equaliser before teeing up Alexis Sanchez’s sublime volley. But Demichelis rescued a draw from a pulsating match when he nodded Aleksandar Kolarov’s corner past Wojciech Szczesny in the 84th minute. It was a bitter blow to Arsenal, who appeared to have done enough to mark Danny Welbeck’s debut with a precious victory.
City manager Manuel Pellegrini was furious with referee Mark Clattenburg, saying he got three key decisions wrongs. The Chilean believes neither Wilshere nor Sanchez’s strikes should have been allowed, while he also thinks Wilshere should have been penalised for handball in the box.
“I think it was a great game, two very good teams which try to play, both teams are very creative,” Pellegrini said afterwards.
“Today both goals by Arsenal were very clear fouls, the first one, two or three continuous fouls and the second one Welbeck on Vincent.
“Wilshere had two hands in front of the linesman and it is a clear penalty, so in that case I must be very happy with the draw. We have more possession and more chances than Arsenal.”
Clattenburg was the referee when City lost against Liverpool last season, when Pellegrini felt Martin Skrtel handled for the Reds’ second goal.
“I think we have very difficult decisions, today was unbelievable,” Pellegrini added. “He [Clattenburg] had a very bad day today in the same way he had a bad day against Liverpool last year.”
Wilshere disagreed with Pellegrini’s assessment, feeling there was little he could have done to avoid the ball coming in contact with his hand.
“The ball just bounced up and hit my hand,” he said. “It is tough for referees and on another day he might give it but he didn’t.”
Wilshere was named man of the match and is pleased with recent performances for club and country.
“I’m trying to do what I do week in week out, I’m trying to work hard in training and taking those performances out onto the pitch,” he added.
“I felt good. I had a good couple of games with the national team I recovered well and felt fresh today. We started brightly and another day we could have won.”
City led after a 50-50 clearance in midfield looped out to an unmarked Navas on the right wing. The Spaniard set off and delayed his pass perfectly for the arriving Aguero to slide his shot past Szczesny.
Arsenal got a 63th-minute equaliser through Wilshere who rounded Gael Clichy with a wonderful touch before lofting the ball over Hart.
And, nine minutes later, Wilshere was involved as Arsenal surged ahead through Sanchez, who volleyed his team-mate’s header into the net, but Demichelis had the final say with another header.