Alexis Sanchez made his Premier League debut and struggled most of the first half. He had to wait until the end of the half for his first meaningful contribution. With a free kick from deep, he found Laurent Koscienly unmarked in the box, allowing the Frenhman to equalise after Palace had shocked Arsenal 10 minutes earlier with the opener, with Brede Hangeland scoring after being left similarly unmarked at a corner.
Palace acquitted themselves well despite the tumultuous preparations of the last two days, which saw Tony Pulis - last year’s saviour - quit the club over transfer demands. Despite that, Keith Millen had prepared a defensively organised side.
In the second half Arsenal struggled to create chances, and they brought on Olivier Giroud for Yaya Sanogo to try and turn around their fortunes.
Jason Puncheon saw red for a second yellow with minutes left as the pressure told on Palace. Then, in injury time, Ramsey turned in a dramatic winner.
Aaron Ramsey (R) of Arsenal celebrates his goal with team mate Mikel Arteta (Reuters)
29’ - WILSHERE GOES CLOSE - Jack Wilshere drives towards goal with his left foot, but Speroni pushes away a bobbling ball.
33’ - HANGELAND GOAL - Hangeland flicks a ball on at the near post that finds its way into the far post. He was totally unmarked.
45’ - KOSCIELNY SCORES - Sanchez clips in a free kick down the centre of the box, and Koscielny is left unmarked by Hangeland, and he heads in from close range.
71’ - RAMSEY SHOT - Ramsey curls a shot towards goal from 25 yards but Speroni gets behind it easily.
89’ - PUNCHEON SENT OFF - Puncheon goes off for a second yellow challenge after his late lunge on Monreal.
90+1’ - RAMSEY GOAL - From an Oxlade-Chamberlain cross Koscielny heads the ball into the air, Giroud keeps it alive with a header of his own and it falls to Ramsey who turns it past Speroni.
Arsenal's Laurent Koscielny (L) heads to score against Crystal Palace (Reuters)
Arsenal have won none of their last five Barclays Premier League opening weekend fixtures.
Palace have won just one of their six opening weekend fixtures in the Premier League.
Arsenal have now recorded 100 Premier League victories at the Emirates Stadium.
This was the first match in seven Premier League home games that Olivier Giroud has failed to score.
Olivier Giroud has scored six goals in his last six Premier League appearances at the Emirates Stadium.
Arsene Wenger’s side have won their last six Premier League games in a row.
Will Aaron Ramsey remain Arsenal’s most important player? Ramsey was easily Arsenal’s best player of this match and last season. With the Ozil-style giddiness over Alexis Sanchez’s transfer, it may be that Ramsey’s contribution will again be slightly undervalued into this season, too.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Aaron Ramsey of Arsenal is challenged by Mile Jedinak of Crystal Palace (Getty)
Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal): Arsenal were creatively bereft for the entire match, scoring from a late goalmouth scramble and a set-piece. That may change as the season develops, but Ramsey has continued his knack for scoring important goals.
Arsenal: Szczesny 6, Debuchy 6, Koscielny 6, Chambers 6, Gibbs 6, Arteta 6, Wilshere 5, Ramsey 6, Alexis 6, Cazorla 5, Sanogo 6. Subs: Monreal 6, Oxlade-Chamberlain 7, Giroud 5.
Crystal Palace: Speroni 6, Kelly 6, Dann 6, Hangeland 5, Ward 6, Puncheon 6, Jedinak 5, Ledley 5, Bolasie 6, Chamakh 6, Campbell 5. Subs: Delaney 5, O'Keefe 6, Gayle 6.
THE MATCH IN A TWEET
- Sports & Recreation
- Premier League
- Aaron Ramsey
- Olivier Giroud
- Alexis Sanchez
- Brede Hangeland