ARSENAL fans were left exasperated by Raheem Sterling beating Rob Holding for Manchester City’s opening goal after only 80 seconds.
Sunday’s Premier League clash saw Pep Guardiola’s side aiming for their eighth consecutive league win over the Gunners.
And 5ft 7in Sterling provided City with a perfect start at Emirates Stadium when nodding home a cross from Riyad Mahrez.
But Gooners fumed at defenders Holding, Hector Bellerin and Pablo Mari for letting the diminutive winger score a free header.
In particular, the 6ft 2in centre-back Holding was seen planted to the turf as Sterling, seven inches his junior, rose unopposed.
One Gooner pointed out on Twitter: “Sterling is 5’7. Holding is 6’2. Sterling had a free header from 6 yards out.”
Arsenal fan Piers added: “Sterling is 7 inches shorter than Holding… and out-jumped him by 2ft. Utterly ridiculous.”
Eduardo commented: “Unacceptable from Holding. You can’t let a 5’7” Sterling head the ball there.”
Osman wrote: “Sterling heading in between Mari and Holding. How? So poor.”
And Koma tweeted: “So anyone knows why Arteta decided to play Mari/Holding? That 4ft Sterling scoring a header is on Arteta’s hands.”
Mikel Arteta had picked centre-back David Luiz and Gabriel Magalhaes for the midweek draw with Benfica.
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But the pair were only on the bench on Sunday as the Gunners boss rotated his pack.
Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live, pundit Karen Carney noted: “It’s a good goal by Manchester City but it’s a shocking start from Arsenal.
“It’s criminal that Raheem Sterling can beat your two centre-backs in the air to score a header.”
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