Arsenal dominated in the 3-0 win over Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday with Alexis Sanchez scoring a brace for the Gunners.
Arsenal got a perfect start to the game as they scored all three goals during the opening 19 minutes.
Sanchez made it 1-0 after just six minutes. Mesut Ozil squared the ball from the right side inside the penalty area as Sanchez made a run towards the near post and scored after a nifty backheel.
Ozil then made it 2-0 just a minute later. This time it was Theo Walcott that had the ball inside the penalty area on the left side and squared a pass to Ozil who placed the ball near the left post, making it impossible for David de Gea to get down in time for a save.
Arsenal came out with incredible pace and the United midfield with Michael Carrick and Bastian Schweinsteiger just couldn’t keep up. Time after time the Gunners broke through way too easily and it felt like there would be a quality scoring chance every time Arsenal got into the final third of the pitch.
Sanchez finished the scoring with his second of the game in the 19th minute as he blasted a shot from just inside the penalty area in behind de Gea. Sanchez now has five goals in the last two league games.
United made a couple of changes at halftime, bringing on Marouane Fellaini and Antonio Valencia in place of Memphis Depay and Matteo Darmian, but the game was already lost. United did play a little better in the second half, but it never felt like they were going to be able to turn things around. There was a lack of real scoring chances, and the Arsenal defense did a great job in dropping low and neutralizing Anthony Martial.
United manager Louis van Gaal was surprised with the way the game played out and was disappointed in the performance of his side.
“I didn’t expect that,” van Gaal told MUTV after the loss. “I was surprised. No performing our game-plan, no will to win. We were top of the league so I was surprised – maybe ‘amazed’ is a better word. When you give a team like Arsenal so much space to play football, you know you shall lose. We have prepared ourselves in that way, to play more compact but not to lose our aggression. It was amazing for me and very disappointing. The players are in an emotional moment because we have lost. We have lost in a way you cannot lose when you are top of the league. You cannot start like that.”
His counterpart at Arsenal, Arsene Wenger, was obviously much more pleased with how the game went.
“We won our last Premier League game 5-2 and we won here 3-0 so in the Premier League we have scored eight goals in two games against two difficult opponents,” Wenger told arsenal.com after the game. “Overall it was a convincing performance. It was a strong response against Manchester United following our disappointment on Tuesday night. It shows the group is very united and very strong as well and from goalkeeper to No 9 everybody played very well, which is what you want.”
Wenger also spoke about what he will do to try and keep the fine form going forward.
“My plan is to pray now that everyone comes back from international games without any injury because we have a small group,” Wenger said. “We play at Watford straight away and on Tuesday night here against Bayern Munich. We will need the same kind of performance.”
With the win, Arsenal moved up to second place in the standings, two points behind leaders Manchester City. United slipped down to third, and trails Arsenal on goal difference.