Sanchez double keeps Arsenal’s top-four hopes alive

Arsenal ensured the race to finish in the Premier League’s top four will go down to the final day of the season with a laboured win against relegated Sunderland.

Alexis Sanchez tapped in Mesut Ozil’s square pass to the relief of those inside a sparsely populated Emirates Stadium.

As Arsenal increased in urgency, Sanchez bundled in Olivier Giroud’s cut-back to renew their hopes of a top-four finish for a 21st successive season.

Despite having 36 attempts at goal – the most in a Premier League game since 2003 – the Gunners could not wipe out fourth-placed Liverpool’s superior goal difference.

Arsenal are a point behind the Reds – who are two goals better off – before Sunday’s final matches.

Realistically, Arsene Wenger’s men must beat seventh-placed Everton and hope the Reds slip up against relegated Middlesbrough at Anfield.

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