Arsenal squeezed past Stoke 1-0 at the Emirates but it came at a cost with both Cesc Fabregas and Theo Walcott going off injured as the Gunners close in on the summit of the Premiership. Arsenal are now unbeaten in ten league games whilst Stoke have yet to win away in 2011 but the visitor's after a quiet first half made it a nervy second period for the Gunners as they clung on to their one goal advantage.
Stoke offered little in that first 45 minutes but pressed Arsenal after the break but failed to get the breakthrough. Gunners keeper Wojciech Szczesny denied John Carew and Robert Huth headed over the bar.
But even five minutes of added time, which had the Gunners faithful anxiously blowing the referees whistle, was not enough for the Potters to grab a battling point.
Manchester United still have a game in hand on Arsenal but for boss Arsene Wenger he will be waiting anxiously for the reports on his injured pair of Fabregas and Walcott particularly with the Carling Cup final on Sunday.
Referee: Peter Walton
Venue: Emirates Stadium Attendance: 60,041
Arsenal scorers: Squillaci 8 Stoke scorers:
ARSENAL 53 Szczesny 03 Sagna 18 Squillaci 20 Djourou 22 Clichy (yellow card) 04 Fabregas (Arshavin 14) 08 Nasri 14 Walcott (Denilson 71) 17 A Song 19 Wilshere 52 Bendtner (Chamakh 80)
Substitutes 01 Almunia, 27 Eboue, 28 Gibbs, 07 Rosicky, 15 Denilson, 23 Arshavin, 29 Chamakh
STOKE 01 Begovic 04 Huth 17 Shawcross 06 Whelan 12 Wilson (yellow card)(Wilkinson 87) 14 Pugh 16 Pennant 18 Whitehead 24 Delap 19 Walters (yellow card) (Fuller 78) 22 Carew
Substitutes 29 Sorensen, 03 Higginbotham, 05 Collins, 28 Wilkinson, 15 Diao, 09 Jones, 10 Fuller