Ben White proved he’s a master of the dark arts during Arsenal’s 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur by putting off Ryan Sessegnon as he was about to shoot.
Hugo Lloris’ own goal and a long-range effort from captain Martin Odegaard were enough to secure a win for the Gunners and take them eight points clear at the top of the Premier League.
Arsenal put in a composed performance at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, not letting the occasion or hostile crowd get to them.
Mikel Arteta’s side knew they had a job to do after Manchester City dropped points in a 2-1 defeat to Manchester United on Saturday.
Nobody summed that desire to win up more than White at right-back. Spurs came out after the break, as they typically do, full of energy.
Sessegnon broke down the left and managed to find his way into the Arsenal box. White knew he and Gabriel had been beaten for pace.
What did he decide to do? That tactic we’ve all pulled at seven-a-side. He shouted as loud as possible to put his opponent off at a vital moment.
Luckily for Arsenal, an inspired Aaron Ramsdale got down low to Sessegnon’s shot wide with his foot. If it went in, it would’ve changed the whole complexion of the game.
Arsenal started on the front foot and got their reward within 14 minutes after some fine work from Bukayo Saka. His cross took a deflection off Sessegnon, which Lloris then turned into his own net.
After Thomas Partey struck the post with a wicked volley, Odegaard scored his eighth goal of the season from a distance to give the away side a commanding lead.
Spurs couldn’t get themselves back in it, with Ramsdale producing saves from Harry Kane and Richarlison to keep Antonio Conte’s men at bay.
Arteta told reporters in his post-match press conference: “I’m very happy for two reasons. One, because I saw a team with a lot of courage, determination and quality, and that really wanted it today, to come here and win the game.
“And the other one, because we have a job where we are really privileged that we can make a lot of people happy and when you have this opportunity, you have to try to do it.
“So the enjoyment of sharing the victory with the fans was a great feeling and then everything that we do, all the suffering, the hours of work, it makes a lot of sense when you have moments like this.