Hector Bellerin came to Arsenal’s rescue as the defender’s last-gasp strike earned a dramatic 2 -2 draw in a heated London derby against Chelsea on Thursday.
Bellerin looked set to be the villain of the piece for Arsenal after the Spaniard’s foul on Eden Hazard conceded a penalty that allowed the Chelsea star to cancel out Jack Wilshere’s opener.
When Marcos Alonso put Chelsea in front with just six minutes left at the Emirates Stadium, Bellerin’s misery seemed complete.
But the 22-year-old enjoyed a sweet moment of redemption in the 90th minute as he lashed in only his second goal of the season.
The frenetic conclusion to a thrilling encounter actually did little for either team’s prospects in the Premier League.
Chelsea remain in third place, one point behind Manchester United and 16 adrift of runaway leaders Manchester City.
Arsenal, who have now won only once in 13 league meetings with Chelsea, are languishing in sixth place, five points behind fourth placed Liverpool in the battle to qualify for the Champions League.
In an early sign of the drama to come, Alvaro Morata squandered a golden opportunity to put Chelsea ahead when Arsenal defender Calum Chambers completely misjudged a long pass.
Morata pounced on the loose ball and sprinted clear but with only Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech to beat, the Spain striker scuffed woefully wide.
Foreshadowing the penalty angst to come for Wenger, Ainsley Maitland-Niles had a spot-kick appeal turned down following Victor Moses’ challenge.
It looked a good decision by referee Anthony Taylor however and there was more frustration for Wenger moments later.
Alexis Sanchez wriggled into position for a powerful shot that Thibaut Courtois pushed onto one post, with the ball rolling agonisingly along the goal line, then hitting the other post before rebounding into the keeper’s arms.
If that was a stroke of luck for Chelsea, there was no fortune about Courtois’s next contribution as he produced a fine save to deny Alexandre Lacazette after the Arsenal forward turned Gary Cahill and unleashed a powerful low strike.
Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil almost opened the scoring just before half time with a stinging drive that whistled narrowly wide.