Middlesbrough beat Arsenal 2-1

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/t/tuncaysanli.jpg' class='caption'> Arsenal lost its first game of the EPL season, falling at Middlesbrough 2-1 to leave the Gunners with a one-point lead at the top of the standings.

Updated: December 11, 2007 16:57 IST
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Arsenal lost its first game of the Premier League season on Sunday, falling at Middlesbrough 2-1 to leave the Gunners with a one-point lead at the top of the standings.

Stewart Downing and Tuncay Sanli scored to give Middlesbrough its first win in any competition since September 1. Tomas Rosicky scored in injury-time for Arsenal.

Bolton beat Wigan 4-1 for its biggest win this season, Tottenham defeated Manchester City 2-1 with a late goal from Jermain Defoe, and West Ham beat host Blackburn 1-0.

Arsenal leads the league with 37 points, followed by Manchester United with 36 and Chelsea with 34.

"We lost the game because we deserved to lose it," Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said. "It's that simple. Middlesbrough were sharper in the fight."

Middlesbrough scored in the fourth minute with a penalty kick from Downing, who sent Arsenal goalkeeper Manuel Almunia the wrong way. The spot kick was awarded after Arsenal defender Kolo Toure brought down former teammate Jeremie Aliadiere in the penalty box.

In the 74th, Sanli scored into the corner with a rebound after Almunia had pushed away a shot from Middlesbrough midfielder Gary O'Neil.

Rosicky turned in a cross from Gael Clichy in injury time, which means the Gunners have scored a goal in every Premier League match this season.

Middlesbrough's physical approach prompted Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger to replace Eduardo da Silva with the taller Nicklas Bendtner at halftime, and Theo Walcott and Denilson with 30 minutes remaining, but the Gunners still struggled.

"Our approach to (the game) was fantastic," Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate said. "I felt Arsenal having three games in a week was a tall order for them and thought it might be a good day to get them."

Arsenal drew 1-1 with Newcastle four days ago and faces Steaua Bucharest in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Arsenal was without injured midfielders Cesc Fabregas, Robin van Persie, Alexander Hleb and Mathieu Flamini.

Arsenal had been the only unbeaten club in the Premier League after Liverpool lost to Reading 3-1 on Saturday.

Bolton took the lead with an own-goal from Wigan defender Paul Scharner in the fourth minute. Denny Landzaat equalized for Wigan in the 14th.

Nicolas Anelka missed a penalty kick in the 23rd minute, sending it over the bar. But Anelka helped set up Kevin Nolan to put Bolton ahead in the 37th.

Kevin Davies scored from a free kick from El Hadji Diouf in the 70th and Anelka wrapped up the win in the 89th.

Tottenham won its third game this season when Defoe scored with a rebound in the 83rd minute after Steed Malbranque's shot had hit the post.

A minute before, Manchester City midfielder Stephen Ireland was sent off for a challenge on Lee Young-pyo.

Tottenham went ahead in the 44th with a close-range goal from Pascal Chimbonda. Rolando Bianchi leveled in the 61st by heading in a corner from Martin Petrov.

Dean Ashton, who had come on as a substitute at halftime, scored for West Ham in the 52nd after George McCartney had cut the ball back to him.

West Ham goalkeeper Robert Green preserved the win by saving a shot from Tugay Kerimoglu at close range in the 88th.

On Saturday, Carlos Tevez scored two goals, and Ryan Giggs and Cristiano Ronaldo added the others in a 4-1 win for Manchester United over last-place Derby.

Chelsea also kept pace with a 2-0 win over Sunderland.

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