Arsenal 2 - 0 Bournemouth

Mesut Ozil scored one and set up the other as Arsenal beat Bournemouth 2-0 in this afternoon's Premier League match to go top of the table and end the Cherries' six-match unbeaten run. 

The opening 25 minutes of the contest went by with little incident as Bournemouth largely frustrated the hosts and in fact were the more threatening of the two sides. However, the Cherries fell behind as Gabriel Paulista marked his return to the team with his first goal in Arsenal colours, heading home a corner from Mesut Ozil, who claimed his 16th Premier League assist of the season.

The goal filled Arsenal with confidence and they were soon flooding forward in numbers. Theo Walcott was twice denied by Artur Boruc, while Gabriel, who had not scored for over two-and-a-half years, almost had a brace in 10 minutes as another header from an Ozil corner came back off the post.

Boruc appeared to get a crucial fingertip on the ball to help it on to the post and Per Mertesacker somehow headed wide the rebound from point-blank range.

Bournemouth managed to get through until half time just one behind and Howe decided to make a half-time change by bringing on Junior Stanislas for Marc Pugh.

The visitors appeared to have settled down upon the resumption, but Arsenal carved them open shortly after the hour mark to double their advantage.

This time Ozil was the scorer, exchanging passes with Olivier Giroud before calmly slotting past Boruc from close range. 

Arsenal were keen for a third goal to kill off Eddie Howe's side, with first Walcott flashing a shot wide before Giroud was denied from 20 yards by Boruc. Matt Ritchie warmed Petr Cech's palms with a speculative effort at the other end, but it was Arsenal who always looked more likely to score the third goal.

Giroud slid the ball just wide from Ozil's cutback before being taken off, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain hit the woodwork with a deflected shot in the final 10 minutes.

Three points takes Arsenal to the top for 24 hours at least, with the two teams below them - Leicester and Manchester City - meeting tomorrow night. Bournemouth drop a place to 20th and stay three points above the relegation zone. 

28/12/15

Football results provided by whatsthescore.com

You Can Follow The Gunners 247 On Pinterest