Sep 22, 2013, 10:27 AM EST
Mesut Ozil continued to shine for his new London club, grabbing all three assists on set-pieces as Arsenal thumped Stoke City at the Emirates 3-1 on Sunday.
The win is their seventh straight in all competitions, as all of a sudden the Gunners are now top of the table in the Barclays Premier League.
Arsenal pressed early, and Stoke did all they could not to break. The early defensive effort was not enough for the visitors though. Mesut Ozil crashed a free kick on goal which Asmir Begovic parried, but only in the path of Ramsey who touched home for the opener in under five minutes.
Jack Wilshire proved a physical presence in the midfield early on for Arsenal, although some of his challenges were less than advisable. Stoke slowly played themselves into the game, gaining a bit more of possession around the 20th minute mark.
It was the counter that earned Stoke their equalizer. An absolutely beautiful lofted ball from Steve Nzonzi up to Marouane Chamakh saw the Belgian clatter the left post of Szczesny’s goal, but American Geoff Cameron was there for the rebound, which he put on the opposite end of the net and no chance for the Polish keeper.
With Theo Walcott proving unfit just before the match for the Gunners, 18-year-old Serge Gnabry got his first Premier League start. The youngster was heavily involved, with Arsene Wenger choosing to build mostly from the right flank with Ramsey and Gnabry combining well.
Arsenal continued to be dangerous on set-pieces, coming close on a number of corners and free-kicks. That was exactly where they reestablished their lead from, as Ozil delivered a great corner in the 35th minute and Per Mertesacker – always a threat on those plays – headed home from long range. Laurent Koscienly actually had a chance to redirect the header to be sure it goes in. He missed, but the ball went past Begovic anyways.
The first chance of the second half fell to Arsenal, as Olivier Giroud almost scored his fifth goal of the young season. Gnabry did well to pick off a pass in the attacking half and lay off the ball to Giroud who took the 2-on-1 situation himself, firing a laser beam at the top right corner which Begovic did very well to save full-stretch.
The third Arsenal goal came again on a free kick in the 73rd minute, as Ozil delivered a long ball over the pack of players in the box to Bacary Sagna on the far side, who looped his header over Begovic into the far corner. It was a lovely header from the defender, not someone you’d normally back to score like you would a more aerial threat such as Mertesacker.
Stoke have had a decent start under Mark Hughes and didn’t look totally hapless, but in the end were outclassed by a team clicking on all cylinders. Hughes’ side remains on 7 points hovering around mid-table.
Arsenal – Ramsey 5′, Mertesacker 36′, Sagna 72′
Stoke – Cameron 26′
Arsenal – Szczesny; Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielney, Gibbs; Flamini, Ramsey; Wilshire, Ozil (Arteta, 80′), Gnabry; Giroud.
Stoke – Begovic; Cameron, Shawcross, Huth, Pieters (Palacios, 67′); Walters, Wilson, Nzonzi, Adam (Ireland, 59′), Arnautovic; Jones (Pennant, 75′).
Nov 26, 2014, 1:13 PM EST
Former Reds’ goalkeeper Bruce Grobbelaar had some choice words for the struggling Simon Mignolet as Liverpool’s tumultuous season continues.
Nov 26, 2014, 12:29 PM EST
The Bayern star was outshone by Sergio Aguero’s hat trick in Munich’s 3-2 loss to Manchester City.
Nov 26, 2014, 11:30 AM EST
Stoke City will be without their on-loan winger as the Nigerian international is sidelined with a thigh injury.
Nov 26, 2014, 10:45 AM EST
Rog and Davo scrutinize Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool and welcome Kyle Martino to the pod.
Nov 26, 2014, 10:19 AM EST
Eight Champions League matches take place today as Arsenal and Liverpool both look to rebound from Premier League losses.
Nov 26, 2014, 9:25 AM EST
Spanish defender Sergio Ramos questioned some players loyalty to the national team, which didn’t sit well with Cesc Fabregas.
Nov 26, 2014, 8:35 AM EST
The Aston Villa striker will be looking for minutes as he heads down the ranks to the Championship on a one-month loan.
Nov 26, 2014, 7:45 AM EST
Four Premier League defenders found their way onto FIFA’s shortlist for the 2014 FIFPro World XI.
Nov 25, 2014, 11:15 PM EST
There were a lot of fouls in the first leg of Los Angeles and Seattle’s Western Conference final, and some were quite serious.
Nov 25, 2014, 10:45 PM EST
Like many fun to watch goals, the magic of the shooter is magnified by the mistakes of the defenders.
Nov 25, 2014, 10:00 PM EST
“I think they have to accept we were too strong for them,” added Mourinho.
Nov 25, 2014, 9:16 PM EST
We’ll be following who else comes calling for the Princeton man.
Manchester United assistant Ryan Giggs thinks Chelsea’s the top dog, compares Louis van Gaal to Alex Ferguson
Nov 25, 2014, 8:05 PM EST
Giggs calls the Stamford Bridge club “head and shoulders above the Premier League” on the strength of their back four.
Nov 25, 2014, 7:13 PM EST
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Nov 25, 2014, 6:51 PM EST
Eleven players had their options declined on Tuesday, but Colorado says they could be back with the club in January.
Nov 25, 2014, 6:03 PM EST
Recapping all the action from around Europe after a pivotal matchday in UCL play.
Nov 25, 2014, 5:55 PM EST
Berahino scored in the next match after his arrest, but has since gone cold.
Nov 25, 2014, 5:32 PM EST
Rogers talked about how working with gay and lesbian youth organizations made him realize the impact he could make as an openly-gay player.
Nov 25, 2014, 5:22 PM EST
City’s late show sets up pulsating clash in the Italian capital next month.
Nov 25, 2014, 4:46 PM EST
Citizens grab last-gasp win to boost their chances of making the last 16.
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