Francis Coquelin.

Francis Coquelin thought he could get the ball when tackling Harry Kane

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Francis Coquelin almost cost Arsenal the north London derby when he got sent off in the second half.

The Frenchman was already on a yellow card when he decided to challenge Harry Kane and was rightly shown his marching orders.

Arsenal led 1-0 at the time but trailed 2-1 within seven minutes of going down to 10 men. Luckily for Coquelin, Alexis Sanchez levelled late on and the midfielder has since apologised to his teammates and Arsenal’s fans for putting the club’s title hopes in jeopardy.


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“I didn’t really see the goal [because I was in the dressing room] but someone came and told me that we scored the second one - it was a relief for me,” he told Arsenal’s website. “I did not want us to lose today because at 1-0 I thought we were doing great.

“A point today is a good point, it is a great result for us. I'm really sorry to all the fans for the red card, I think with 11 against 11 we could have won the game as we were playing really well. This red card changed the game. I’m really sorry to the club, to the team and all the fans.”

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Arsenal were in control of proceedings when the 24-year-old earned his second yellow card. Arsene Wenger admitted post-game that he warned Coquelin at half-time about his precarious position but the midfielder thought he could get the ball.

"I thought I could get the ball"

He continued: “I actually thought I could get the ball when I slide tackled [Kane] - that is why I went for it. I touched him and [the referee] gave me the second yellow.

Tottenham Hotspur v Arsenal - Premier League

“But at the end of the day, it’s a good point and hopefully it will be an important point for the title.”

The draw leaves Arsenal eight points adrift of leaders Leicester after Riyad Mahrez’s strike gave Claudio Ranieri’s team a 1-0 win over Watford in the evening fixture.

Are Arsenal now out of the title race? Let us know in the comments section below!

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Premier League
Thierry Henry
Francis Coquelin
Tottenham Hotspur

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