Arsenal have sent out an early indication of their title credentials as they comfortably beat Premier League rivals Everton 3-1 to lift the Asia Trophy.

Gerard Delofeu made an early charge into the Arsenal half as the game started at a high tempo in front of a 50,000 crowd in the National Stadium in Singapore.

Theo Walcott then drew a save from Joel Robles with a powerful near-post strike, only to be flagged offside. However, it was a warning of what was to come for the Toffees as Arsenal took the lead in similar circumstances midway through the first half.

Santi Carzorla was the creator as he picked out the run of Walcott with a defence-splitting ball from the halfway line, which was finished powerfully by Walcott. Arouna Kone then thought he had levelled the game when he lashed home the rebound after Petr Cech had tipped Steven Naismith's header onto the bar, but the offside flag had already been raised against the Scottish international.

Cech made a flying save from Luke Garbutt's 20-yard strike moments after the restart, before Walcott should have doubled the Gunners' lead when he gathered Olivier Giroud's miskick six yards out but could only curl his effort wide of goal.

Arsenal were playing with real verve though, and stretched their advantage when Cazorla cut inside from the edge of the area and drilled an effort low inside the near post.

Cazorla then played in Mesut Ozil who fired home to make it 3-0, before Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain came within inches of making it 4-0 with a lofted effort from just inside the area.

Everton pulled one back late on when Oxlade-Chamberlain lost the ball in midfield and Ross Barkleyskipped clear of the Arsenal defence before lashing a 20-yard effort beyond the reach of Cech, but the damage was already done for Roberto Martinez's side....


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