A damaging goalless draw left Arsenal with three red cards, two cup eliminations and no goals since playing a decent first half against Manchester City on New Year’s Day. They stay sixth in the table, while Burnley remain bottom after a 0-0 draw at the Emirates.
In a drab first half, Burnley came closer to scoring than Arsenal, Aaron Ramsdale misjudging a punch only for the ball to skid off his knuckles, hit a body, and dribble wide.
After half-time, though, Arsenal turned it up, and ought to have scored in the 10-minute period between the 60th and 70th minutes. But Alexandre Lacazette spurned their best opportunity and Burnley steadied themselves thereafter, holding on for a point they both needed and earned.
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TALKING POINT

So far this season, Arsenal have scored just 33 league goals, the fewest in the top six. They need a centre-forward, it's true - Dusan Vlahovic has been left out by Fiorentina this afternoon, so perhaps they’ve now offered a sum so dizzying that they’ve no choice but to sell and he’s no choice but to sign.

However, their struggle is as much with creation as finishing. Against Burnley, they had the overwhelming majority of possession but very few clear opportunities – Alexandre Lacazette ought to have scored in the second half, but that was about it.

Given players as incisive and imaginative as Emile Smith Rowe, Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli, there’s no excuse for Arsenal’s constipation, and much of the blame must lie with their manager, who cannot seem to mould them into a reliable unit. And today, when he needed a goal against the bottom team desperate to hang on for a point, rather than sub his holding midfielder, he withdrew Smith Rowe, his team’s best player. They have work to do, but so does he.

MAN OF THE MATCH

James Tarkowski (Burnley) He and Ben Mee were both excellent, popping up wherever they need to with blocks, tackles and headers.

PLAYER RATINGS

Arsenal: Ramsdale 5, White 6, Holding 6, Gabriel 6, Tierney 5, Lokonga 5, Odegaard 5, Smith Rowe 6, Saka 6, Lacazette 4, Martinelli 4. Subs: Nketiah 6.
Burnley: Pope 7, Roberts 7, Tarkowski 8, Mee 8, Pieters 7, Lennon 5, Westwood 7, Brownhill 6, McNeill 5, Vydra 5, Rodriguez 5. Subs: Gudmundsson 6.

KEY MOMENTS

8’ - SAVE - Rodriguez pulls left and White goes with him, so he feeds down the line for McNeil, who attempts what looks like a cross, but which forces Ramsdale to tip over the bar!

9’ - CORNER ROUTINE - McNeil and Mee attempt the Anderton/Sheringham corner, the former clipping towards the near post and the latter peeling away, drilling just wide. That was a decent effort but also a decent chance.

19’ - CLOSE - Goodness me, Ramsdale stops talking for a minute to come for the corner, punching - well, trying to, except the ball skids off his knuckles, hits someone, and goes behind for a goalkick. That is quite a stroke of luck.

20’ - SAVE - Arsenal move it nicely through midfield and Odegaard sets Smith Rowe away at inside-right. I think he might be offside, but he cuts a clever pass back for Odegaard to drive low and hard ... but Pope makes a sprawling save. Lacazette then collects the rebound and his shot is blocked by Tarkowski!

64’ - ARSENAL GO CLOSE - Saaaaaved! Odegaard cuts the corner back as everyone attacks the six-yard box - save Smith Rowe, who moves onto the ball! He mishits it - onto his standing leg, I think - so rather than go far corner it goes centrally, and Pope turns it around the post really well. Arsenal are coming.

68’ - CHANCE! - Tierney sticks one in behind Roberts and Smith Rowe absolutely screeches past him on the outside, hitting the line and cutting back for Lacazette, who might go with his left but opts for the outside of his right, and that call sends the ball spinning just wide of what's effectively an empty net. He really really should've scored there.

KEY STAT

Arsenal have failed to score in four consecutive matches for the first time since December 2005.
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