Arsenal 5-1 Bournemouth: Cherries trounced after Mesut Ozil masterclass
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Arsenal hosted Bournemouth at the Emirates on Wednesday evening. Read on for Layth Yousif’s match report.
Arsenal trounced Bournemouth 5-1 at the Emirates on Wednesday evening following a Mesut Ozil masterclass.
The rout started with an Ozil goal before he set up Henrikh Mkhitaryan for number two before captain Laurent Koscielny made it three two minutes after the break.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang grabbed the fourth with a clinical finish after Mkhitaryan’s excellent through-ball prior to substitute Alex Lacazette making it five with a well-struck free-kick.
With the crucial North London derby looming at the weekend Unai Emery made six changes from the team that beat Southampton 2-0 on Sunday.
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With only four minutes on the clock Ozil raced through as Cherries keeper Artur Boruc advanced. Faced with a narrowing angle the talented World Cup winner performed what can only be described as a majestic lob over the experienced shotstopper to make it 1-0.
The creative talent was in the sort of form that made you wonder why he attracts such opprobrium as he flitted between the lines as delicately as a beautiful butterfly meanders on a summer’s day. And just as mesmerising.
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On 27 minutes the lead was doubled. Mkhitaryan’s name might have been on the scoresheet but you won’t see a more impish assist as Ozil’s to set up the Armenian all season.
The 30-year-old Gelsenkirchen-born World Cup winner shaped his body as if he were to drive the ball powerfully into the box before subtly finding Mkhitaryan who made no mistake from close range.
Just as fans and pundits alike were expecting a long night for Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth the visitors from the south coast pulled a goal back.
Gosling, who had a shot blocked bravely by Koscielny prior to the Gunners second goal, robbed the promising but raw Matteo Guendouzi on the edge of the box on the half hour before squaring for colleague Mousset.
The 23-year-old former Le Harve striker made no mistake to finish past Leno and completely stall Arsenal’s momentum in the process for the rest of the half.
However, the home side extended their lead moments after the interval as Koscielny made it 3-1.
After fine work from that man Ozil who passed to Mkhitaryan whose cross saw Koscielny hit the post before Aubameyang slotted home following a scramble. There was a hint of confusion before the goal was rightly credited to the captain whose initial shot crossed the line by a yard.
On 59 minutes Aubameyang made it four after rounding Boruc following a superb through ball by Mkhitaryan.
Substitute Lacazette who came on for Mkhitaryan as the Armenian deservedly earned an ovation got in on the act by scoring the fifth after a well-worked free-kick.
What was also satisfying about the goal was that it had clearly been devised on the manicured pitches of London Colney if one observed how the number of Arsenal players populating the wall dispersed moments before the former Lyon forward struck the ball, leaving a hole in which the ball flew through and into Boruc’s net to cap a bad night for Bournemouth.
As the clock ticked down the jubilant Gunners fans started to look to Saturday’s North London derby singing: ‘Tottenham Hotspur/We’re gunning for you…’
For many the eagerly-awaited clash can’t come soon enough. Yet for now it boss Emery could savour a job well done. For a few hours at least.