REISS NELSON was the hero as the winger provided an assist and the winner in his first appearance since November.
The Englishman essentially scored an incredible winner with the final shot of the game, having earlier given Ben White his first Arsenal goal with his first touch.
Arsenal, who were two goals down, maintained their five-point lead at the top of the table with a 3-2 win.
After seeing City beat Newcastle to close the gap in the early game, Arsenal got off to the worst possible start at the Emirates – Philip Billing scoring the second-fastest Premier League goal ever to stun viewers.
As the Gunners pushed forward to equalise, they kept leaving wide gaps at the back and Bournemouth looked dangerous throughout.
The Cherries then had a second with a faint mark from Thomas Partey on a corner that allowed Marcos Senesi to spring into power in a second.
FIVE FIVE FASTEST GOALS BY PREM ALL-TIME
1) 7.69 seconds – Shane Long (Southampton) v Watford, 23 April 2019
2) 9.11s – Philip Billing (Bournemouth) v Arsenal 4th March 2023
3) 9.82 seconds – Ledley King (Tottenham) v Bradford, 9 December 2000
4) 10.52 seconds – Alan Shearer (Newcastle) v Man City, 18 January 2003
6) 10.54s – Christian Eriksen (Tottenham) v Man Utd, 31st January 2018
Arsenal still had a mountain to climb, kept building the pressure and Partey made amends five minutes later by converting an Emile Smith Rowe volley from a half-cleared corner.
It was game and Mikel Arteta went deep into his bench, throwing in Nelson for his first appearance since November 12.
It had the desired effect as Nelson’s first touch got him into the box and his second a cross to the back stick for White to volley in.
Arsenal kept throwing the men forward but it looked like they would have to settle for a draw.
That was until the ball fell to Nelson on the edge of the box and he scored his first goal since October 30 with a beautiful left foot.
That’s how Tom Sheen rated the Gunners in their 3-2 win over Bournemouth.
Aaron Ramsdale – 8/10
Made an incredible one on one save against Dango Ouattara as Bournemouth in the first half and another good stop early in the second.
The cherries might have been out of sight if it weren’t for the goalkeeper, who for a while looked like the only man defending Arsenal’s goal.
Takehiro Tomiyasu- 4
Bombed down the right throughout the first half but his final ball was really bad – with a certain chunk of poor control from an earlier poor cross resulting in a big groan.
Replaced by Ben White at half-time.
He was completely asleep for Billing’s opening game as he watched the ball drift past him after Gabriel failed to clear.
Showed good pace to make a few interceptions and blocks from recovery but got thrown out of position one too many times.
Gabriel Magalhaes – 4
Struggled like his centre-back partner despite not providing much help from his full-backs and midfielders.
Arsenal did well to reclaim the game but Bournemouth looked dangerous all afternoon.
Oleksandr Zinchenko – 4
Looked tired at times, especially when caught high up the pitch and Bournemouth countered.
His usual incisive passes and runs were also discussed, and he was often sloppy with possession.
Thomas Partey – 6
Apparently not quite back to his pre-injury best when he could claim to be the best midfielder in the Premier League.
However, Partey was at the heart of everything Arsenal did and he scored an important goal to put the Gunners on the comeback lane.
Martin Odegaard – 6
Like the rest of his midfield, he seemed unwilling – or unable – to really make those recovery runs when his team needed him.
His passing wasn’t quite as sharp as in recent games, but he was always dangerous and always looking for a dangerous ball.
Fabio Vieira – 6
Given his lack of Premier League football, it was clear Vieira was desperate to impress and he certainly looked a lot livelier and energetic than some of his team-mates.
Although his quality occasionally faltered, it wasn’t a bad performance in just his second Premier League start.
Bukayo-Saka – 6th
Saka is so often the man Arsenal looks to when they need some magic, but he was found wanting today.
Bournemouth left-back Jordan Zemura enjoyed his fight with Saka and when he left Ryan Fredericks also proved he was up to the task.
Gabriel Martinelli – 7
He looked the most likely of all Arsenal players to score, but for once he left his shooting shoes at home.
Made a series of penetrating runs and had a couple of good chances – but didn’t find the target.
Leandro Trossard – N/A
Lasted just 20 minutes before succumbing to injury – a major blow to Arteta, especially as Eddie Nketiah was also injured this week.
Emile Smith Rowe (for Trossard, 21) – 5th
Came in for the injured Trossard and only lasted about 45 minutes himself – not clear if he was injured or just had a minute limit.
Delivered the goal for Partey’s opener with a high ball back into the box but looked good off the pace and at his best.
Ben White (for Tomiyasu, halftime) – 8
More content to sit back than Tomiyasu had been, giving the Gunners a little more stability at the back.
Choosing the moment to move forward, he made the most of it by scoring his first goal for the club to equalize.
Reiss Nelson (for Smith Rowe, 68) – 9th
Talk about the instant impact – his first touch was getting him off his feet in the box and his second was firing him across so White could volley in.
His introduction and direct running style allowed Arsenal to really push forward in the final stages and he was the hero as he sent home a brilliant winner with what was essentially the last shot of the game.
Granit Xhaka (for Vieira, 84) – N/A
Came in late to try and add some quality to midfield.
subs not used: Matt Turner, Kieran Tierney, Ben White, Jakub Kiwior, Rob Holding, Jorginho.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/7548528/arsenal-player-ratings-nelson-ramsdale-arteta/ Arsenal player ratings: Reiss Nelson saves the Gunners with a goal and an assist in their first game since November