After missing out on the chance to go top of the league on boxing day, the gunners must have realised that anything other than a victory will be disastrous and unacceptable,and a victory they got convincingly.
Arsenal started the match making 4 changes from the boxing day team that suffered a humiliating 4-0 loss at Southampton. Gibbs, Chambers, Gabriel and Chamberlain all came in for Monreal, Flamini, Koscienly and Campbell.
Bournemouth started the game as the better side enjoying some early possession but it was only a matter of time before the gunners got into their stride.
This was a classical Ozil performance dominating the final third and creating several clear cut chances. It was his delivery from the corner kick that found Gabriel who scored the first goal. Ozil himself got on the act as he scored from a Giroud’s flick. He’s arguably the player of the season so far and when he is in this sort of mood nothing can stop him.
The scoreline didn’t tell the full story of the match as Arsenal were more dominant than the result suggested. Ozil could easily have had 3 assists in this match and break Thierry Henry’s record if only his team mates were more clinical in front of goal especially Theo Walcott who squandered so many of Ozil’s chances.
The other impressive thing about Arsenal’s display was how the players usually on the bench fit in seamlessly with the regulars. Chambers, Gibbs,Gabriel and Chamberlain came in and did a very decent job. The most impressive among them was Gabriel. He was a constant threat at set pieces and also very effective at the back making a crucial block to deny Josh King when cleared on goal. He made sure that Koscienly’s absence wasn’t felt and did a lot to keep convincing the ever growing Arsenal fans’ opinion who feel he should be starting ahead of Per Mertesacker at the centre back.
Congratulations to Petr Cech who set a new record in the premier league with 170 clean sheets after surpassing David James’ record,a record he fully deserves after his years of performing consistently at the top Level.
It must be said that Bournemouth didn’t lose this match because they were poor. They lost because they met a better team and a Mesmerising Ozil. Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe was also impressed saying “Ozil is a difficult man to mark because he drifts and he roams. To man-mark him will be incredibly difficult for one player. I didn’t enjoy watching his performance because I am the manager of the opposing team but from a football point of view you have to respect what he delivers because it was of a very high standard”. Not so many teams would have gotten any point of out this match when Arsenal are in this sort of mood. After Bournemouth’s recent victory against Chelsea and Man united they have a lot to be proud of.