Arsenal climbed to the top of the Premier League table for the first time since February 2014 with a 2-1 win over Everton at the Emirates stadium in London. The Gunners ensured victory with two first half goals from in-form striker Olivier Giroud and his countryman Laurent Koscielny. The second half was well matched and the Gunners held onto the lead, making it a perfect week with wins also coming against Watford and Bayern Munich.
Can Arsenal sustain this form?
For Arsenal the victory brightens their title credentials and with this they finish their week on a high note. The Gunners knew a win would steer them to the summit in the Premier League table, at least for the time being until the Manchester Derby. It’s a cliche to say that Arsenal often fall apart in the new year, but that’s because they so often do. Arsene Wenger admitted after the game that he did not expect his team to be at the top come October end, especially after Arsenal suffered a disappointing 0-3 home defeat to West Ham in the season opener.
Giroud and Walcott have a healthy competition going on
A player who’s in sparkling form at the moment is Olivier Giroud. 5 goals in 7 games after being dropped in favour of Theo Walcott shows that he’s determined to prove his critics wrong. Wenger decided to replace Theo Walcott with the Frenchman as a result of the good form shown by Giroud in their recent matches, especially after the all important goal against Munich on Tuesday. Following his opener against Everton Giroud has now scored in five consecutive games for club and country. Both Walcott and Giroud offer two completely different options for Wenger to choose from.
While many believe Giroud is excellent when coming off the bench, it is also worth noting that Walcott has ability to stretch teams during the later stages of the match, when tiredness comes into play. The manager still sees Theo Walcott as Arsenal’s first choice striker and rightly so. But Giroud has a unique element to offer to certain games that Theo can’t and at other times he’s been hugely effective in his new role as a ‘super-sub’.