Search

Podolski double sees off Hull and boosts Arsenal’s Champions League chances

16:02 20 April 2014

Arsenal

Arsenal's Lukas Podolski (centre) celebrates scoring his side's second goal with his team-mates

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Hull City 0 Arsenal 3

Lukas Podolski grabbed his second brace in successive games as Arsenal beat Hull to strengthen their grip on fourth place in the Premier League.

The impressive Aaron Ramsey put the Gunners ahead in the 31st minute with his first goal since November before setting up Podolski to make it 2-0 just before the interval.

And the German forward all but made the points safe with his second of the game early in the second half as Arsenal went on to equal their best away win of the campaign.

The Gunners started slowly – as they have tended to do all season – with the defence often looking uncomfortable under pressure from the Tigers’ front pairing of Shane Long and Nikica Jelavic.

Jelavic almost put his side ahead in the 15th minute, wriggling away from Per Mertesacker to fire a low shot on the turn that Wojciech Szczesny got down to tip behind.

James Chester headed over from the subsequent corner, while Long could have done better when he eased between Laurent Koscielny and Nacho Monreal to collect Jake Livermore’s pass, but miscued his finish.

Aside from a Podolski attempt that was beaten away by Steve Harper, the visitors offered precisely nothing in the first half-hour and the opening goal came completely against the run of play.

For the first time in the match, Arsenal put together a slick passing move – initiated by Ramsey, who burst into the box as Santi Cazorla laid off Mesut Ozil’s ball and met it on his right foot, slotting past Harper.

Hull were unlucky not to equalise soon afterwards as Livermore’s 25-yard drive rattled the post with Szczesny stretching frantically, while Long bundled another chance straight at the goalkeeper.

But the Gunners doubled their lead with a counter-attacking goal on the stroke of half-time as Olivier Giroud made space out wide and crossed for Ramsey, who chested the ball down for Podolski to arrow a first-time volley into the bottom corner.

The home side did their best to manufacture a glimmer of hope at the start of the second half, with substitute Matt Fryatt unable to finish off a half-chance created by Tom Huddlestone.

But any notion of a comeback was scuppered on 54 minutes as Cazorla cut the ball back for Ramsey, who was denied by the legs of Harper – only for Podolski to tuck away the rebound and make it 3-0.

Giroud almost made it four, pouncing when Harper delayed over a Liam Rosenior back-pass and the Gunners striker attempted to score from a tight angle, but his effort bounced down off the crossbar.

With Arsenal now displaying something of a swagger as they stroked the ball around, it only remained to be seen whether they could add further goals.

Substitute Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain did his best to create some, winning a free-kick that Mertesacker headed onto the roof of the net and galloping away on the right to find Ramsey, who was denied by Harper.

At the other end, Szczesny produced saves to keep out Huddlestone and Fryatt as Arsenal emerged comfortable winners in the rehearsal for next month’s meeting between the sides at Wembley.

Arsenal: Szczesny; Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal; Arteta, Ramsey; Cazorla, Ozil (Flamini 61), Podolski (Sanogo 84); Giroud (Oxlade-Chamberlain 74).

Latest Islington Sports News

Thu, 22:02
Middlesex's Dawid Malan

Skipper Dawid Malan struck an unbeaten half-century to lead Middlesex to a thrilling victory over Somerset in a rain-reduced T20 clash at Lord’s.

Thu, 16:00
Jordan Nobbs, Arsenal Ladies

Jordan Nobbs says Arsenal Ladies must replicate their performance level from last month’s Wembley success to get their league campaign back on track.

Thu, 12:00
Middlesex batsman Nick Gubbins

It’s a shame Chris Gayle won’t be coming to Lord’s when we take on Somerset – in a way it would have been fun to play against him.

Thu, 07:28
Islington BC's gold medal winners at the Haringey Box Cup, left to right: Amy Broadhurst, Lamin Conteh and Amy Andrew. Pic: Dieter Perry

A trio of Islington BC fighters maintained the club’s excellent record in the Haringey Box Cup with three gold medals at Alexandra Palace.

Wed, 16:30
George Bailey batting for Australia

Middlesex coach Richard Scott is predicting a “seamless transition” when George Bailey replaces Brendon McCullum as the club’s overseas player next week.

Wed, 15:49
Shotokan Karate London students recorded a 100 per cent pass rate with their gradings

Shotokan Karate London celebrated a 100 per cent pass rate as a total of 23 students successfully navigated their grading examinations.

Wed, 13:11
Access2Sports U16 players Jason Prince (left) and Rio Murray-Webster in action

Rio Murray dominated the closing stages to ensure that Access2Sports defeated Kensington & Chelsea Knights 70-29 and clinched a place in the Community Basketball League Under-16 play-off final.

Wed, 13:00
Islington sprinter Shania Umah with one of her medals at the London Schools Championships

Sprinter Shania Umah was Islington’s star performer as she collected two medals in the London Schools Championships at Battersea Park.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

£15k prize bundle

Imagine having the opportunity to win an incredible £15,000 bundle of some of the most amazing prizes available. Well, for one lucky contest entrant that dream could soon become a reality because we at MyOffers are offering an incredible free prize bundle that will make even the most hardened person wild with excitement.

Win a BMW 1 series

There are fewer cars currently on the market more stylish and exciting than the BMW. Known all over the world as one of the best car manufacturers, the BMW is renowned for sleek designs and fantastic high quality workmanship.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe