The Warm Down: Ruthless Arsenal flourishing under Unai Emery after ninth straight win
A second-half rout saw Arsenal hit five past Fulham at Craven Cottage.

The Warm Down: Ruthless Arsenal flourishing under Unai Emery after ninth straight win

A brilliant performance on Sunday saw the Gunners beat Fulham 5-1 at Craven Cottage.

andy-preston
Andy Preston

A five-star performance on Sunday saw the Gunners win their ninth consecutive game in all competitions.

Arsenal took the lead at Craven Cottage through Alexandre Lacazette and the Frenchman put the Gunners into the lead once again shortly after half-time with Andre Schurrle equalising just before the break. 

A sumptuous team goal which was finished by an audacious flick from Aaron Ramsey gave Arsenal a third, before Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang marked his substitute appearance with two goals to cap a near perfect afternoon for the side from north London.

Emery experimenting with two strikers

Rotation will be key for Arsenal throughout the season with the hectic Thursday-Sunday schedule which comes with the demands of playing in the Europa League.

However, many would have been shocked to have seen no Mesut Ozil, Aubameyang or Ramsey included in the starting line-up. Ozil’s back injury and Aubameyang’s recent illness saw the in form Alex Iwobi given a start as well as Danny Welbeck and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

Many had debated before the season whether Emery could accommodate both Lacazette and Aubameyang in the same line-up but those questions seemed to have been answered by the pairs recent form.

It appeared that for a lot of the game that Welbeck had joined Lacazette up top in an unorthodox 4-4-2 formation, with Iwobi and Mkhitaryan deployed out wide.

Arsenal unleashed their ruthless attacking force when Aubameyang replaced Welbeck up front and joined in the scoring alongside Lacazette to complete the rout.

It’s clear that Emery has a lot of attacking options to explore with his forward players in a clinical mood scoring five away from home despite their most creative force in Ozil not being available.

Stunning performance from  Torreira

Arsenal’s lack of steel in midfield has been the route of problems in seasons gone by, a void which has rarely been filled since the days of Gilberto Silva and Patrick Vieira in midfield.

However, Emery looks to have found a gem of a midfield player to play that role in Uruguayan midfielder Lucas Torreira. He was vitally important in Sunday’s win, providing endless energy, dynamic creativity and an exceptional ability to read the game.

The Uruguayan is quickly becoming a cult hero in North London and has even earned himself a personal chant from the fans to the same tune of Arsenal legend Vieira.

Lacazette hits purple patch

Surprisingly the Frenchman struggled to break into Emery’s starting XI for the first two games of the season, subsequently Arsenal’s only defeats of the season so far.

After enduring a frustrating summer, being omitted from the French national side as they went on to win the 2018 World Cup, Lacazette looks more determined than ever to prove his worth at both club and international level.

Lacazette looks considerably fitter than last season, where he struggled to last more than 70 minutes in his first few months of Premier League football. His willingness to adapt to Emery’s pressing style has been noteworthy and his ability to drop into midfield to help link play has helped Arsenal’s fluid attacking style flourish in recent weeks.

The French striker has now scored four and assisted two in eight Premier League appearances this season and is starting to become the talisman that Arsenal fans hoped the club had purchased when he made his move from Lyon to Arsenal for £50million in July 2017.

Nine wins on the bounce

Emery’s side are beginning to click into gear and despite not always executing the Spaniard’s game plan as effectively as he may have hoped, the Gunners are getting results and have now strung together an impressive run of victories.

Emery’s philosophy was implemented most impressively by Arsenal at Craven Cottage in the Gunners finest performance of the season so far and put in to fruition with a beautifully worked team goal.

Hector Bellerin plucked the ball out of the air with a back-heeled volley before Ramsey carried the attack, heading the ball to Mkhitaryan who played an inch perfect pass for Aubameyang. He then crossed for Ramsey to finish the move with a delicate flick into the bottom corner.

Arsenal will be looking to continue their form after the international break as they face Leicester City at the Emirates on October 22nd before a crunch game against Liverpool at home in November.

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