Football: Wright shoots down record

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The Independent Online
Arsenal 2 Coventry City 1 Now it is a matter of record and no longer supposition: Ian Wright, by one calculation at least, is the most prolific scorer in Arsenal's history, another brace yesterday extended his sequence of goals to a remarkable 10 successive games.

Furthermore he did it on a half day, a groin injury bringing the hottest hit man to a halt at the interval, an objective way beyond the scope of a Coventry defence cast by their own shortcomings in the role of willing accomplices to another virtuoso Wright performance.

The muscle pull could keep him out for some time, but if it does not, then those hired to stop him will rest a little easier because of the three-match ban that follows his seventh booking of the season.

'I just go out to score to give us a chance of winning games, but it is nice to look back and see that I have set a new record,' Wright said of his achievement in breaking David Jack's nine-game scoring run which had stood since 1931.

If today's medical prognosis is pessimistic, it could be the last the Arsenal faithful see of their master finisher for up to four weeks, and in the middle of his ban comes England's friendly with Nigeria which he will also have to forgo.

After the interval, Arsenal struggled to maintain their earlier supremacy, and showed how less potent they are without him, although Wright would be the first to acknowledge how much he was helped by Coventry's generosity.

On 15 minutes, David Rennie took an age to clear the ball, enabling Stefan Schwarz to come across to block before setting up the striker for a side- footed finish. Three minutes after his caution for fouling Steve Pressley, Coventry's new pounds 600,000 defender from Rangers, the numbers were turning again to register Wright's 15th goal of the season, all but one of which have come in the last 10 games.

Martin Keown's long punt found Pressley distracted and Wright, anticipating the mistake, made a swift sway around Steve Ogrizovic and up went the trademark raised-arm salute once more.

It was that easy and would have stayed so, had Nigel Winterburn had not pushed Dion Dublin for Roy Wegerle's penalty conversion eight minutes from time. This gave the Gunners a few anxious moments before they could confirm their eighth win in nine games and a rise of four places in the table.

Arsenal (4-4-2): Seaman; Dixon, Keown, Bould, Winterburn; Parlour, Selley, Schwarz, Campbell; Wright (McGoldrick, h-t), Smith. Substitutes not used: Linighan, Bartram (gk).

Coventry City (4-4-2): Ogrizovic; Pickering, Pressley, Busst, Morgan (Borrows, 73); Flynn, Rennie, Darby, Jones (Ndlovu, 55); Wegerle, Dublin.

Substitute not used: Gould (gk).

Referee: A Wilkie (Chester-le-Street).