Three Things We Learned From Arsenal's Entertaining 3-2 Win at Crystal Palace

Shkodran Mustafi's first half strike and a double from Alexis Sanchez gave Arsene Wenger victory over Crystal Palace in his record equalling 810th game as a Premier League manager.


It wasn't all plain sailing for the Gunners against an impressive Palace. Here's what we learned from an eventful London derby.

1. Jack Wilshere's Return Is Huge for Arsenal

This was Jack Wilshere's fourth consecutive game in Arsenal's starting lineup, and it's easy to see why the Englishman has been able to re-establish his position in the Gunners' starting eleven.


Wilshere was a huge presence in the centre of the park for Arsenal on Thursday night. He was a presence in the centre of the field all night for his side, drawing fouls and spreading the play brilliantly. His inch-perfect pass to set up Sanchez for his second goal was the icing on the cake of a spectacular performance.

2. Palace Can Pull Clear of Danger if They Can Convert Draws to Wins

Going into this match Crystal Palace were on a club record eight league games unbeaten. Five of those eight games however had ended in draws, and Palace have just four league wins all season.


This of course is not a game they were expected to win, but with the pace of the talismanic Wilfried Zaha causing all sorts of problems for Arsenal's full-backs, the Eagles created more than enough chances to win this one on another day. If Palace can apply the finishing touches to more of those opportunities on other days, they should be looking up rather than down. 

3. Teams Will Be Rubbing Their Hands if Arsenal Play 3 at the Back Again

Amidst all the excitement of Alexis Sanchez' finishing, Jack Wilshere's form and Arsene Wenger's record, it is easy to forget that Arsenal made much harder work of this match than they probably should have done, and it was the setup at the back that was crucial in that.


Playing three at the back is nothing new for Arsenal, but it left full-backs Hector Bellerin and Sead Kolsinac as non-entities defensively, giving the pacy Wilfried Zaha, and later substitute Bakary Sako, the freedom of the flanks in the Arsenal half. 


Almost all of Palace's chances came from there, and more ruthless attacks will fancy themselves to bag a few should they get those chances next time they face Wenger's side.

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