Arsenal shot to the top of the Premier League table after defeating Everton 2-1 in a nervy match on Saturday.
Olivier Giroud opened the scoring for the Gunners late in the opening period, rising between Phil Jagielka and John Stones to glance a header over Tim Howard and into the Toffees’ net.
Mesut Ozil provided the pinpoint cross for the Frenchman, who used the back of his head to guide the ball over the outstretched hands of Eveton’s American keeper.
Arsenal won the ball back immediately after the restart, driving up the pitch before Alexis Sanchez was felled by Seamus Coleman just outside the left-hand edge of Everton’s box.
Santi Cazorla whipped the ball in from the resulting free kick, leaving Tim Howard flapping once more as Koscielny nodded in from two yards out to give Arsene Wenger’s side a two-goal advantage.
Ross Barkley was the man that gave Roberto Martinez’s side a glimmer of hope just before the interval, as his 20-yard effort took a wicked deflection off Gabriel Paulista to beat Petr Cech at his near-hand post.
Arsenal went on the offensive immediately in the second period, as Giroud’s dummy from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s through ball allowed Sanchez to fire an effort on target which Howard turned around the post. Oxlade-Chamberlain and Giroud then combined in the box to allow the latter to strike an acrobatic volley at the Everton goal which Howard was equal to.
Immediately afterwards, the England international’s fizzed cross just evaded the striker’s outstretched leg for what would have been a tap in.
Ozil once more set up the France striker as the 70th-minute mark approached, finding the feet of Giroud inside the box. The man chosen to lead the Arsenal line ahead of Theo Walcott worked the ball onto his favoured left-foot before firing an effort over Howard which rattled the crossbar.
Gareth Barry was sent off for a late challenge in the dying moments of the game as Arsenal took three points and top spot in the Premier League.
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