Manchester United coach Jose Mourinho has poured special praise on the Spanish goal-keeper, David De Gea, who frustrated Arsenal’s goal effort, at the thrilling match at the Emirates on Saturday.
De Gea saved an incredible 14 shots and made Arsenal’s 70 per cent dominance count for just one goal.
The Spaniard was incredible throughout but the highlight was an astonishing double save to keep United’s lead intact at 2-1. Mourinho hailed the display as “the best from a goalkeeper in the world”.
“I told him after the match that what I saw today was the best goalkeeper in the world. In big matches you need goalkeepers to be there for you”, Mourinho said.
United ended Arsenal’s 12-match home winning run in the breathless encounter to close the gap on Manchester City on Saturday. They won 3-1, with the victory taking them to within five points of the Premier League summit.
Mourinho took his team to the Emirates with questions over how they would approach the fixture after a poor recent away record against fellow members of the “Big Six”.
But United quashed all thoughts of shutting up shop and were immediately on the front foot, taking the lead through captain Antonio Valencia in the fourth minute and doubling their lead just minutes later through in-form Jesse Lingard.
Arsenal came back strongly, attacking in waves and pulled a goal back early in the second half through Alexandre Lacazette but United re-established a two-goal margin through Lingard again.
As the match lost some of its high-octane momentum, referee Andre Marriner sent off Paul Pogba for a studs-up tackle on Hector Bellerin to change the balance of the contest, but Arsenal could not take advantage.
With the Manchester derby looming next week at Old Trafford, United have a chance to haul themselves right back into the title race though Mourinho will be devastated to lose the services of midfielder Pogba.
“I loved the way my team played and fought,” said Mourinho. ” Arsenal played in some period amazing attacking football — creating difficulties for us. But I have to say that my players deserve all the great words.
“I don’t know so many in English but amazing, phenomenal, fantastic. They deserved three points.”
Wenger commented: “I am really disappointed because it was a good performance, but we had nothing to show for it at the end and that is hard to take.”