Arsenal coasted to a 4-0 victory against Swansea after a nervy start.
The home team started off on the front foot at the Liberty stadium, but yet another goal from Olivier Giroud – who signed a contract extension earlier this week – on the 37th minute meant Arsenal led at half time. Giroud looked to have picked up an injury in the build-up to the goal, and was forced off on the 60th minute.
Alex Iwobi looked very impressive once the second half commenced, and forced Jack Cork and ex-Tottenham player Kyle Naughton into conceding two own goals in the 54th and 67th minute respectively, before Alexis Sanchez wrapped things up in the 73rd minute with a smart finish after Wayne Routledge cleared the ball into his path.
Sanchez was then substituted on the 80th minute along with Mesut Ozil, and the Chilean did not look happy at all. He cut a frustrated figure as he walked off the pitch and buried his face in his hands for the remainder of the game much to the chagrin of the travelling support.
Speaking after the game, Arsene Wenger confirmed that Olivier Giroud – who was seen nursing his ankle with an ice pack – had picked up an ankle injury but did not elaborate on how serious it was. He also said that he wasn’t worried by Sanchez’s reaction, as the Chilean is never happy to be substituted :
“Olivier Giroud did well again and he was important for us. He had an ankle injury after 30-35 minutes and got to 60 minutes,” Wenger said, according to NBCSports. “Alexis Sanchez is not injured, he just wanted to stay on the pitch. I did not want to take a gamble on him. There are many good teams around us and everyone is doing well. We can only focus on our results and hope some go our way.”
Wenger also said that he was encouraged by the Gunners’ second half performance, and said that his team made their own luck with the own goals through their display of attacking football :
“The first half was very intense physically, they gave a lot in the first half and then our pace took over. They had problems to contain us. Swansea were very well organised and they closed down as a unit very well.” Wenger said. “In the second half, you could see we could create chances. Our transition and accuracy of passing was very good. We were fortunate with the goals, but the chances were there.”
The result means that Arsenal are now in third position, one point behind fierce rivals Tottenham Hotspur. They are tied on points with Liverpool, who face Manchester United tomorrow night at Old Trafford.
Despite Sanchez’s reaction, the Chilean was once again very impressive but this will only increase the feeling that he is growing frustrated at Arsenal and is looking to leave. Either way, the Gunners can be happy with the 3 points.