Arsenal saw off an initially spirited Fulham side at Craven Cottage in Sunday's afternoon kick off with a hugely convincing 5-1 win against one of their Premier League London rivals.
With Arsenal on an eight-match winning streak coming into Sunday afternoon's kick off against a Fulham side with only one league win to their name in the 2018/19 season, on paper this contest seemed like a formality for the Gunners and in truth it ended up being one.
A lethal double for Alexandre Lacazette and super sub Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, with a beautiful team goal in the middle of that flurry from contract concern Aaron Ramsey ensured Unai Emery's men would make it 9 wins in a row for Arsenal in all competitions.
What a wonderful goal. Ramsey's gorgeous flicked finish after a fine move.— Charles Watts (@charles_watts) October 7, 2018
"We've got our Arsenal back" chant the away fans.
Key Talking Point
Anguissa from Fulham has had the worst half hour of football I can remember a player having in the Premier League. Where did they get him from?! #FULARS— Lee Barratt (@LeeGallows) October 7, 2018
The Fulham manager demanded improvement following their second half capitulation away at Everton, however that information didn't seem to be understood by the Cottagers as they imploded under Arsenal's second-half pressure, Fulham have conceded the most goals in the Premier League so far this season, and the ever changing defensive lineup cannot help that cause one bit as they stoop perilously towards the relegation zone.
Luciano Vietto and Andre Schurrle's movement and interchangeability caused Arsenal problems throughout the contest and as a result they were able to grab an equaliser before the first half ended. At the other side of the pitch, Jokanovic was forced to switch tactics after the second Arsenal goal but by then it only made things worse as the assault from the Gunners was endless.
The international break may be coming at a good time for a Fulham side who were harshly given a reality check by the Gunners, as aside from a lone goal from Schurrle, the Cottagers looked poor and after the second goal from Lacazette early in the second half, the home crowd were forced silent because of the class Arsenal showcased.
Cyrus Christie whenever Arsenal attack down the left pic.twitter.com/SyE4yKQMJi— ODDSbible (@ODDSbible) October 7, 2018
Starting XI: Bettinelli (5), Christie (4), Odoi (5), Ream (5), Le Marchand (5), Seri (5), Anguissa (4), Vietto (6), Schurrle (6),R. Sessegnon (5), Mitrovic (4).
Substitutes: Kamara (6), McDonald (6), Ramsey (7).
The man that ensured Fulham went into the break level, Schurrle can be one of very few to take positives out of Saturday afternoon's humbling. At points he seems to be the only one interested in fighting for the cause and attacking an Arsenal side that are prone to conceding goals.
However, with no real support from his teammates it proved to be a lost cause and if Fulham are to avoid a relegation scrap this season, they will have to harness the World Cup winner's passion and energy, and somehow transfer it to the rest of their squad.
I really really want to like Cyrus Christie but he just makes it so hard for me— James Carter (@jamescarterffc) October 7, 2018
In short, Cyrus Christie had an absolute nightmare.
In fairness, the three at the back formation did not suit the Irishman one bit as he had to experience countless bombardments down the right side of Fulham's backline and with no assistance from his teammates, anyone was going to struggle with that task.
Key Talking Point
Arsenal win at Fulham is their 550th in PL - the 2nd team to achieve that milestone— Sky Sports Statto (@SkySportsStatto) October 7, 2018
633 Man Utd
429 Tottenham pic.twitter.com/JT3ParBNX5
With Unai Emery choosing to alternate his attacking outfit against the Cottagers on Sunday afternoon, the likes of Alex Iwobi, Danny Welbeck and Henrikh Mkhitaryan took time to click with the Premier League player-of-the-month-nominee Lacazette. Although just before the half hour mark they did find the formula and in doing so helped the in-form Frenchman open his account for the afternoon.
Arsenal now go above their North London rivals Tottenham on goal difference, but what may please the Arsenal boss even more is his team's defensive resilience and assurance at the back. Although a clean sheet wasn't kept, Bernd Leno, Rob Holding and Shkodran Mustafi looked particularly strong and dominant against a rough opponent in Aleksandar Mitrovic.
GET IN. Convinced part of the reason Welbeck is up top is to offer an aerial target - he wins the flick and that's a fantastic finish from Laca.— gunnerblog (@gunnerblog) October 7, 2018
Emery's Arsenal have won every game in which they have been level at the break and after their team talk at half time, the Gunners came out firing. Eventually the aforementioned statistic was maintained and improved as the onslaught didn't stop up until the last minute.
Substitutes: Aubameyang (7), Ramsey (7), Guendouzi (6).
With Gabonese hitman Aubameyang making a late effort for this award, it is difficult not to say that Lacazette was Arsenal's main man once again today.
The Frenchman was involved in everything on Sunday, he was Arsenal's first line of defence, tracking back and working himself into the ground, not before scoring two fantastic strikes and maybe finding himself unlucky not to get the match ball as well.
Having the captain's armband can have varying effects for players, for Granit Xhaka on Saturday afternoon, it failed to ensure a performance of real quality. As can be the case with the Swiss midfielder, he was sloppy and slow on the ball.
One of the main critiques is his at times lazy distribution of the ball and unfortunately that was on show once again at Craven Cottage, he comfortably ensured Lucas Torreira would have to work for his money this week as stray passes offered Fulham too many opportunities.
After the international break, Fulham head to Wales to face a Cardiff side in search for their first Premier League win of the season, followed by a home tie against Eddie Howe's hugely in-form Bournemouth.
For Arsenal, after a fortnight away with the national sides they will return to the Emirates to seek three points from Leicester City in the league, before attention is quickly turned once again to Thursday night action in the Europa League against Sporting Lisbon.