Norwich City recorded their first Barclays Premier League win under new manager Chris Hughton as Arsenal were beaten 1-0 at Carrow Road.
Arsenal, who included England midfielder Jack Wilshere in the squad after more than a year out with injury, were second best as Grant Holt's scrambled effort on 20 minutes after a parry by goalkeeper Vito Mannone proved enough for all three points to move the hosts out of the relegation zone.
Arsene Wenger’s sdie, who have lost two of their past three league games, were below the fluent best and created very few openings as Norwich's defence held firm.
Norwich started brightly as winger Anthony Pilkington fired a 20-yard effort wide. At the other end, Arsenal forward Lukas Podolski cut in from the left and flashed a shot across the face of John Ruddy's goal.
Hughton’s side did not resemble a team which had let in 17 goals in their previous seven games, and looked more of an attacking threat with Wes Hoolahan tucked in behind Holt.
The Canaries were in front on 20 minutes. Norway midfielder Alexander Tettey let fly from 25 yards across a skiddy surface and Mannone, deputising for injured No 1 Wojciech Szczesny, parried the ball back out into the six-yard box, where Holt was quickest to react ahead of Per Mertesacker and stab home.
Arsenal had also fallen behind at West Ham last time out, and soon went on the offensive again. Bradley Johnson, who was on Arsenal's books as a youngster, was cautioned for a late challenge on Santi Cazorla.
There was, though, danger in the Arsenal box again when Holt drew Mannone out to the touchline and hooked the ball back across goal, where Carl Jenkinson hacked it clear as Pilkington was set to shoot at an unguarded net.
Despite all of their possession, Arsenal lacked a killer pass in the final third, and Norwich looked dangerous on the counter-attack. Centre-back Michael Turner planted a header wide after a late run into the six-yard box from a corner.
At the other end, Gervinho was picked out by an angled free-kick from Mikel Arteta, but completely missed the ball, much to the delight of the home crowd.
Arsenal pressed Norwich back at the start of the second half, but looked suspect from balls into their own area as Javier Garrido's floated cross from the left just eluded Holt at the far post.
The Gunners broke quickly on 51 minutes with Jenkinson's cross palmed away by Ruddy but Olivier Giroud could only hook the loose ball wide. As the hour mark passed Norwich continued to press with Holt again asking questions of the Gunners' defence.
When Arsenal did break, Gervinho's header lacked pace after a clever flick-on by Giroud.
Wenger had seen enough and on 65 minutes Podolski was replaced by England midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, but the England winger soon picked up what looked a hip problem, and had to be replaced by Andrey Arshavin after less than 10 minutes.
Holt capitalised on a slip by Thomas Vermaelen on the half-way line to rush clear - only to float a soft chip at Mannone.
Arsenal made their final change with eight minutes left when 17-year-old German Serge Gnabry replaced Aaron Ramsey. Arteta's low strike was held by Ruddy as Norwich closed out a hard-earned first league win through five minutes of added time.
|09 Mar 2013||v Southampton (H)|
|19 May 2013||v Man City (A)|
|19 Jan 2013||v Liverpool (A)|
|15 Dec 2012||v Wigan (H)|
|12 May 2013||v West Brom (H)|
|26 Dec 2012||v Chelsea (H)|