Arsenal won their 5th straight match in all competitions since the surprise home loss to Villa. With yesterday’s win, they went top of the league though it might be for a brief spell but should Chelsea fail to win at Goodison park which won’t be a surprise and Liverpool loose to Swansea, then we will stay league leaders till next weekend at the earliest.
To the match proper, record acquisition Ozil got his debut as he started and what a start he had when he latched on to a long ball, controlled superbly and laid it on the plate for Giroud to dispatch into the bottom corner. It took the king of assists just 10 minutes to register his presence in a new country and league. His assists would have been more had Walcott been more clinical. When you spurn opportunities, chances are rife that you’ll pay for them and that was Arsenal’s fate in the second half. A rash challenge by Koscielny on Johnson gifted the Black Cats a penalty and Gardner cooly slotted in. At that point, the pendulum swung Sunderland’s way, had a goal ruled out for offside and when it looked like Sunderland might get their noses in front, a cross from Walcott got Ramsey volleying home. The third goal was the icing on the cake, move started by Ramsey, continued by Ozil, assisted by Giroud and finished off by Ramsey. Ahead of the game I had expectations though there was no clean sheet but Giroud scored and Ozil had a sublime start to life in the Premier League. That’s not bad, is it?
I learnt certain things in the game and below are the 5 things I have noticed from the game
No striker on the bench
At the twilight of the window, Wenger tried bringing in a new striker and the reason was obvious for all to see today. There was no single striker on the bench no thanks to injury sustained by Sanogo and overweight Bendtner who is trimming down in Denmark. I Just hope no injuries to Giroud this year as there is no decent back-up.
Ozil’s debut (an assist)
The name on the lips of all fans was Mesut Ozil and he lived up to the hype with barrages of key passes. He had just an assist but could have been more had Walcott been more clinical. If his debut is anything to go by, Giroud will be licking his lips at the prospect of what a season with Ozil will be like.
Giroud can’t just stop scoring
The Frenchman is on fire, he has 4 in 4 and all the goals he has netted this season has been top notch. For his goal today, he showed agility, speed and a lovely finish. He is apparently bubbling with confidence. Even his overall performance was very good. He made the assist for Ramsey’s second goal. He is now the league’s top scorer pending Sturridge and Benteke’s showing tomorrow.
When Wenger decided to bring back the Frenchman, he was hugely berated for opting for a ‘spent force’ that was free instead of spending money on natural defensive midfielders who were in their peak period but Le Prof defended himself and called the decision a no-brainer. The Frenchman has been brilliant. Against Spurs, he was good and today he was superb, showing defensive alertness, strength, physicality and leadership qualities. With Flamini and Ramsey’s form now, Arteta faces a huge task getting back into the first team.
Mannone can’t even start for Sunderland
Thought he left Arsenal in search of regular first team football but yet, he can’t seem to get it at lowly Sunderland. In the wake of Mignolet’s sale, it was expected that the Italian would be the new number 1 but he seems to be playing back-up to Westwood. He is yet to be in goal in any of Sunderland’s 4 Premier League games. Bottom line is that he isn’t good enough for Arsenal.