Vardy scored again in the second half before much-maligned manager Arsene Wenger would make two critical substitutions, bringing in striker Olivier Giroud for Rob Holding and Aaron Ramsey to replace Mohamed Elneny with just over 20 minutes left in the game.
Two minutes later, the comeback was complete, with super-sub Giroud sending the home fans wild via magnificent header from a Xhaka corner, despite being held by Wes Morgan.
"I opened the door for him at some stage as it's important for him to play but I don't want him to go", Wenger said at the post-match news conference.
"Not only as a player, he is a fantastic player, b ut as well in the group - he has a big weight in the squad and it was a relief for me that he made a decision to stay".
Pandya ton lifts India to 487 in 3rd Test
After an early fall of wickets , Pandya and Kuldeep Yadav had stabilised the innings and helped India reach a challenging score. The fact that Sri Lanka's spinners took all the wickets save one today speaks volumes about the way the pitch behaved today.
The 30-year-old has been linked with the likes of West Ham, Everton and Marseille since the arrival of club-record signing Lacazette but Wenger is pleased the former Montpellier man has opted to stay put.
Asked if there was any update on Sanchez's situation, Wenger replied: "No". "If you look at that from a neutral point, for a first game it was a top quality game".
"We have to take the positives out of the game, we have gone toe-to-toe with Arsenal over 90 minutes and I don't think many teams will come here and do that".
"He doesn't want to leave and I'm happy he wants to stay".
"I went to a three-man midfield to get us a screen because Mesut Ozil was playing in the pockets and I wanted Wilfred Ndidi to get in and around him".
"We had some avoidable goals which we conceded and overall we have to work on that", he said referring to poor marking in the by his team's defence. I'm disappointed with the handball in the build up, but once the corner's given you have to defend it better.
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