The game started out pretty tense especially for Wenger who lost two of his most important players just before the last game of 2013. Ramsey and Ozil were not on the team-sheet which gave Wilshere and Rosicky a chance to perform at their best after being played out of position for so long. It actually paid off as far as the English international goes. He was one of the best players on the pitch.
The first 20 minutes were a bit dull. Arsenal seemed to focus on not conceding a goal rather than trying to get the advantage over Newcastle. It was obvious that losing to City has taken its toll on the Gunners who are now only 1 point ahead of the Citizens.
Wilshere got the first shot in after 25 minutes. He failed to find the target though and the ball sailed over the bar. Newcastle responded through Debuchy whose shot went well wide of the target.
Rosicky finally found the target in the 28th minute but Krul denied Arsenal the chance of opening the score.
With a few minutes to go until the first half whistle, Sissoko was brought down by Flamini inside the box but the referee was not impressed.
The second half started off in the same tone as the first part of the game. Nothing noticeable happened until the 65th minute when Giroud scored after a perfectly executed free kick. Walcott was the one with the assist.
Newcastle tried to get the equalizer but managed to only have two half-chances before the end of the game. Ben Arfa and Ameobi both failed to score and the final whistle was blown, giving Arsenal a hard-fought victory on tyneside and sending them back to the top of the table going into 2014 as they lead Man City by 1 point and Chelsea by 2 points.