A 4-1 win over Newcastle didn’t move Arsenal up the Premier League table, but it did place them a lot closer to the top 4, as both Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla finished with a brace in what was probably the club’s best league performance this season.
Anything that can take the pressure off of Arsene Wenger is a welcome result. The Champions League has been dealt with well and now they’re only two points below the place that leads to the Champions League. This season hasn’t been going exactly according to plan and they’re only sixth. They Championship race seems to be a bit out of reach, but things could be worse.
Alexis Sanchez didn’t score and also got the wind knocked out of him by a foul that deserved a red card from Cheik Tiote, but he set up Olivier Giroud, almost a forgotten man this season after being so vital for the team last season, for the first goal in the 15th minute. That opener didn’t make things simpler for Arsenal, struggling to create chances after Danny Welbeck so a goal disallowed for no reason.
Still, Newcastle, despite Alan Pardew picking up an award recently, weren’t up to their usual home form, struggling to create chances until the game was clearly out of reach. Santi Cazorla scored a nice goal after some poor defending, Giroud picked up the brace in the 58th minute to give us almost 30 minutes of garbage time with an easy tap in from close range and Cazrola got his second two minutes before the end from the penalty spot.
Newcastle got a goal back in the 63rd minute by Ayoze Perez, but it wasn’t until very late in the match that they were able to actually trouble the Arsenal defense, for once not a point of criticism for the pundits.