Arsenal 3-1 Leicester: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scores twice in win
Mesut Ozil and substitute Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang inspired Arsenal to a 3-1 victory over Leicester on Monday Night Football and a 10th win in a row in all competitions.
The Foxes capitalised on a positive start at the Emirates when Ben Chilwell’s shot deflected in off Hector Bellerin in the 31st minute.
However, Ozil’s well-taken goal on the stroke of half-time proved to be the catalyst for an Arsenal comeback.
Arsenal: Leno (6), Bellerin (7), Mustafi (6), Holding (6), Lichtsteiner (6), Mkhitaryan (6), Torreira (7), Xhaka (6), Ozil (8), Iwobi (7), Lacazette (6)
Subs: Guendouzi (6), Aubameyang (8), Ramsey (5)
Leicester: Schmeichel (5), Amartey (5), Evans (5), Maguire (5), Chilwell (6), Pereira (5), Mendy (5), Ndidi (6), Maddison (5), Iheanacho (6), Vardy (5)
Subs: Albrighton (5), Ghezzal (5), Okazaki (5)
Man of the match: Mesut Ozil
Aubameyang was introduced in the 61st minute and scored twice inside five minutes, finishing from Bellerin’s cross and then tapping in after a slick passing move.
Ozil played a key role in both goals and his man-of-the-match display was instrumental in an impressive victory, which came on former manager Arsene Wenger’s 69th birthday and moves the Gunners back into fourth in the Premier League.
It looked like Arsenal’s winning streak would be tested when, inside the opening six minutes, Kelechi Iheanacho saw a shot deflected over and then had a curling effort saved by Bernd Leno.
Arsenal were open at the back and loose in possession and were fortunate not to concede a penalty when the ball hit Rob Holding’s hand in the box.
Leno then made a sharp low save to keep out a header from Harry Maguire before Leicester’s pressure eventually was rewarded, Chilwell bursting up the left flank, taking the ball past Bellerin with a brilliant first touch and then finishing with the help of a deflection off the Spaniard.
But the goal belatedly sparked Arsenal into life and they levelled before the break.
Ozil played out to Bellerin on the right and then coolly finished the return pass into the box with a side-footed shot across goal and into the far corner.
The goal proved to be pivotal as Arsenal dominated after the break.
Leicester’s only opportunity came in the 57th minute when Wilfred Ndidi beat Leno to a corner but headed against the bar from 10 yards out.
Aubameyang was introduced a few minutes later and soon put Arsenal ahead when he finished from close range after Bellerin played across the face of goal from Ozil’s perfectly-weighted pass.
Unai Emery made two changes to his side that thrashed Fulham 5-1 before the international break. Mesut Ozil returned in place of Danny Welbeck while Stephan Lichtsteiner replaced injured full-back Nacho Monreal.
Jonny Evans replaced the suspended Wes Morgan for Leicester.
Ozil was involved again in Arsenal’s slick third goal, dummying for Alexandre Lacazette and then chipping a return pass across goal for Aubameyang to finish.
Lacazette should have added to the scoreline but was denied at close range and then missed the target from a low cross.
- Arsenal have won 10 consecutive matches in all competitions for the first time since October 2007 (a run of 12).
- In all competitions, Leicester are winless in their last 26 visits to Arsenal (P26 W0 D6 L20) since winning 2-0 in the top-flight in September 1973.
- Leicester are winless in their last eight Premier League away games in London (D3 L5), losing the last three in a row.
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been directly involved in 21 goals in his 22 Premier League games for Arsenal (16 goals, 5 assists).
- Arsenal have scored more Premier League goals via substitutes this season than any other team (6).
- Mesut Ozil became the highest scoring German player in Premier League history (30 goals).
- Mesut Ozil has scored three goals in his last four Premier League appearances, as many as he bagged in his previous 22 in the competition.
- Hector Bellerin scored his first own goal in the Premier League in what was his 133rd appearance in the competition. The Spanish defender also provided two assists in a PL game for the fourth time in his career.
Man of the match – Mesut Ozil
Captaining Arsenal from the start for the first time in the Premier League, Ozil delivered a masterful display. He made a cool side-footed finish for the first goal look easy, before playing a key part in the second and third goals. This was one of his best performances in an Arsenal shirt for a while.
Arsenal travel to Sporting Lisbon in the Europa League on Thursday before going to Crystal Palace on Sunday, live on Sky Sports. Leicester host West Ham next Saturday.
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