Newcastle fight back to inflict another away defeat on Arsenal

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Alexandre Lacazette had fired the visitors, who have not collected a single point on the road since the turn of the year, into a richly deserved 14th-minute lead, only for Ayoze Perez to restore parity with his third goal in as many games 15 minutes later, if distinctly against the run of play.

Newcastle's win took them to 41 points and all but guarantees their survival, leaving boss Rafael Benitez delighted with his players' efforts.

Arsene Wenger threw on Ainsley Maitland-Niles for the final 10 minutes, with Callum Chambers making way.

He also becomes the 18th player aged 18 or under to make their league debut for Arsenal under Wenger.

Asked about Arsenal's wretched away form, Wenger said: "It's a lot about the head and sometimes there is no rationality in it".

Newcastle has only lost one of its last seven games, winning five of them.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang returned to the line up after missing the Europa League clash on Thursday evening.

Newcastle threatened through Gayle and Shelvey before Perez found an equaliser on 29 minutes, with a calm finish following a well-executed move that saw Gayle laying off for Deandre Yedlin, whose delivery found Perez. They face Atletico Madrid in the last four and will qualify for the Champions League if they win the competition.

Alexandre Lacazette opened the scoring for the Gunners.

The most worrying thing for Arsenal fans will be the opposition those defeats came against, with Premier League strugglers Swansea, Brighton and Bournemouth all claiming three points, while old north London adversaries Spurs triumphed in February.

Newcastle are nearly certain of being a Premier League club next season. But it was Newcastle who landed the knockout blow in the 68th minute.

Just to rub it in, Matt Ritchie then sealed the three points in Newcastle's favour when Islam Slimani's headed pass bobbled through to him on the edge of the Arsenal 18-yard box via a Perez flick and the midfielder obliged by clipping home the victor. Starting together for the first time, Aubameyang was deployed on the left side but played as a narrow left winger with Lacazette through the middle.

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