Olivier Giroud scored twice to earn Arsenal a vital three points and push them to the top of the Premier League temporarily, three points ahead of Manchester City and Liverpool, although both teams have a game in hand. The French International striker scored his last goals for Arsenal against Aston Villa last season when they hammered Villa to relegation; Giroud grabbed a hat-trick for Arsenal on the final day of last season.
Although today Arsene Wneger’s men found themselves in a scary position altogether with about 20 minutes left to play. Alexis Sanchez opened the scoring with a fine header from an Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain cross, as he raced ahead of Kone to head the ball into the Sunderland net in the 19th minute of the game.
Arsenal could and should have doubled their advantage when Mesut Ozil and Chamberlain, missing guilt edged chances that they certainly should have buried.
Sunderland- bottom of the League and still without a win in ten games, under their manager David Moyes – thought they had equalized when Defoe turned home a cut back from Wahbi khazri, who was flagged for offside.
Alex Iwobi went close again for Arsenal to double their lead as he curled a looping effort from about 20 yards just over. Sunderland lost their captain John O’shea through a hamstring injury just before the break who had made his 350th Premier League start.
Arsenal went into the break leading 1-0 and deservedly so as they were the brighter of the two teams but Sunderland started the second half with purpose and resolve.
Arsenal had umpteen chances to kill off the game and they’re wasted chances turned into horror when Sunderland were awarded a penalty as Petr Cech brought down Watmore as he burst past the Arsenal defense.
Jermaine Defoe stepped up and converted from the spot for his 5th goal in 10 appearances.
Giroud came off the bench and scored just two minutes after being on the pitch to put Arsenal back in front as he placed a Kieran Gibbs cross past Sunderland keeper Pickford in the 71st minute.
Arsene Wenger’s decision to bring on Giroud was indeed a masterful one as the 30year old was at it again. A Mesut Ozil corner was attacked by Giroud and the looping header found itself in the back of the net as Giroud got his brace four minutes after getting on the scoresheet.
Giroud now has scored 7 goals in as many games against Sunderland. And that was not it yet.
Alexis Sanchez later added a fourth as the Gunners cruised to a comfortable win, which seemed unlikely at one stage of the game. Some quick feet in the Sunderland penalty area by the Chilean helped him to a brace as well 12 minutes before time.
The goal added gloss to the scoreline as he collected a rebound from Aaron Ramsey to turn the ball past Pickford.
In a span of seven minutes Arsenal had scored thrice. This took the game away from the host’s as the Stadium of light was filled with resounding boo’s at the full time whistle much to the delight of the travelling Arsenal supporters.