Post-Match Report

Arsenal 3-1 Burnley: How it happened

Aubameyang

Burnley -

Emirates Stadium
Premier League
Premier League
  Arsenal
      
                  Aubameyang (14
                   48)
                   A. Iwobi (90)
            
   crest
Arsenal
Aubameyang (14
48)
A. Iwobi (90)
3 1
  Burnley
      
              A. Barnes (63)
          
   crest
Burnley
A. Barnes (63)

WHAT HAPPENED 

Two goals from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and a late Iwobi strike were enough to see off Burnley and get the Gunners back to winning ways.

Mesut Ozil - back in the side as captain - played a huge part in both the first and last goals, but the game was only settled in injury-time, after the visitors had threatened a second-half comeback when they reduced the arrears to 2-1 just after the hour mark.

In the end our extra quality made the difference against a battling, determined Burnley side.

The visitors - despite starting the day in the relegation zone – created their fair share of chances during an entertaining game.  

Indeed both teams had chances to score inside the opening two minutes. Firstly Ainsley Maitland-Niles broke into the box on the overlap from right back, and Had a shot turned away by Joe Hart before Aubameyang's attempt at the follow up was smothered out.

Immediately Burnley broke, taking advantage of a Nacho Monreal slip, Ashley Westwood strode through on goal but Bernd Leno tipped his low shot round the post.

Granit Xhaka was next to be denied by Joe Hart, but we soon broke the deadlock. There were 18 passes in the build-up, undoubtedly the pick of them was Mesut Ozil's – slicing through the box to find Sead Kolasinac at the far post. He cut it back for Aubameyang to flick home cleverly past Hart. 

It settled us down and both full backs continued to bomb forward from the back. Kolasinac and Ainsley Maitland-Niles were then given even more license to get forward once we reverted to a back three – Nacho Monreal went off injured and Stephan Lichtsteiner's introduction prompted the change of shape from Unai Emery.

The second goal came from a storming run down the left from Kolasinac, who cut inside, fed Alexandre Lacazette who in turn teed up his striking partner Aubameyang to thunder home into the roof of the net.

Burnley kept coming though, and found a way back into the game when Ashley Barnes smashed home a loose ball in the area. The Gunners had failed to clear the danger with the ball bouncing around in the box.

It made the rest of the game more nervy than it needed to be for the final 20 minutes, until Iwobi's injury time strike settled matters.

Once again Ozil was the chief architect, weaving his way into the box before his scuffed shot fell to Iwobi who converted from close range.

We had to work until the very final whistle for the three points, but they were well-deserved in the end.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Click here to read a play by play account of our final game before Christmas

TEAM NEWS

Having been omitted from the squad entirely on Wednesday, Ozil returned to the starting line-up to captain the team again. Lacazette partnered Pierre-Aubameyang up front while Mohamed Elneny came in for his first Premier League appearance of the season.

WHAT IT MEANS

We stay in fifth place, but close the gap on the teams above us before the busy Christmas schedule kicks in in earnest.

WHAT'S NEXT

This was the first of four games in the space of 11 days over Christmas and New Year, the next two are both away from home – at Brighton on Boxing Day and against Liverpool at Anfield three days later. The festive period concludes at home to Fulham on New Year's Day.