Arsenal: Cech, Koscielny, Mustafi, Monreal, Bellerin, Ramsey, Xhaka, Kolasinac, Alexis, Ozil, Lacazette
Subs: Ospina, Mertesacker, Coquelin, Wilshere, Iwobi, Welbeck, Giroud
Arsenal made it seven wins from seven at home this season as a second half flurry helped them a 5-0 win over Huddersfield at the Emirates this evening.
Arsene Wenger made only one change from the team which beat Burnley on Sunday, recalling well again Mesut Ozil in place of Alex Iwobi.
The Gunners wanted a good start and that’s exactly what they got. Aaron Ramsey flicked on a Granit Xhaka pass into the path of Alexandre Lacazette and the French international took it on drilled a left-footed shot into the net to open the scoring in the third minute. 1-0.
Ramsey was next to have a pop, firing over the bar first time from outside the box, and great build up play saw Sead Kolasinac get in behind but the Bosnian took the wrong option with his final pass, letting the visitors off the hook.
Arsenal were in confident mood, dominating possession, but David Wagner’s side settled down and worked hard to deny the home side the chances they wanted. A set piece gave Jorgensen the chance to head over, a bit of a warning sign, while at the other end a lovely turn should have given Alexis a chance to hit the target but he miskicked allowing the defender to clear.
More fine build up and good work from Lacazette almost produced a second goal, his floated effort from a tight angle was cleared off the line and Kolasinac couldn’t put the rebound home under pressure.
Mustafi saved Xhaka’s bacon after the midfielder underhit a pass and gave Huddersfield a sniff of forward momentum, and more carelessness almost cost us when Mounie went down in the box but the referee was having none of it. Only for a superb Koscielny block, another wasteful passage of play would have seen an equaliser borne out of a complete lack of concentration.
Xhaka smashed a shot miles over from 35 yards as Arsenal grew frustrated with their inability to break down the deep-lying defence, and there was a real sense that Arsene Wenger’s men could do more as the teams went in at the break.
There was an Arsenal change at half-time with Olivier Giroud replacing Lacazette. The goalscorer had picked up a knock midway through the opening 45 minutes and with Man Utd at the weekend it was hopefully precautionary from the manager.
A lovely run from Alexis saw him to create a chance for Ozil, but the German took a touch close to goal and that allowed the defender to close him down and make the block. There were still moments of carelessness from Arsenal, but Huddersfield remained unable to take full advantage.
Poor play from Kolasinac ended up with Quarner driving towards goal and forcing Cech into a very good save with his feet to keep the scores level, and the Arsenal keeper saved the day again when he had to scramble to punch the ball over after Monreal had produced an excellent block to deny Kachunga.
There were shouts for an Arsenal penalty for handball but it looked ball to hand and the officials played on, and moments later the lead should have been doubled when Ramsey played in Giroud and when the Frenchman went around the keeper his shot rebounded back off the post from a tight angle.
Alexis combined well with Kolasinac but fired over the bar from inside the area, the Chilean failed to find Ramsey after the Welshman had made a good run, and there was more danger at the Arsenal end but once again the visitors failed to make the most of it.
The Gunners weren’t quite living dangerously, but they were far from convincing either and with just a one goal lead the game was on something of a knife-edge. That was until the long-awaited second goal finally came.
Ozil was the key man, starting the move with a beautiful flick on the wing, then playing a one-two with Alexis to get into the box and squaring for Giroud who tucked it away at the near post to make it 2-0.
That seemed to spark the Gunners into life, and when Ramsey’s perfect pass played Ozil down inside right channel, the German’s cross was swept into the net by Alexis and it was 3-0 Arsenal.
It didn’t stop, this time it was Ramsey who turned provider, slipping a beautiful pass to Ozil who clipped it over the keeper to make it 4-0 and three goals in four minutes.
That prompted Arsene Wenger into making his final two changes, bringing on Danny Welbeck and Jack Wilshere for Ramsey and Sanchez, and it was a brilliant period of play from Arsenal with Ozil providing a goal and two assists in such a short amount of time.
Xhaka tried to get in on the act, curling over from distance, and got one on target but it was easy for the keeper. Great movement and interplay from Ozil fed Kolasinac whose low cross was fired over by Giroud, but the duo combined again a few minutes later and the Frenchman fired into the net from close range to make it 5-0.
Huddersfield had a late free kick from just outside the box but it was fired over with Cech seeing it all the way, and the game entered three minutes of added time with little more to add what had already taken place apart from a free kick which went out for a corner.
In the end the biggest win of the season so far, and a very nice way to prepare for United at the weekend.