LONDON: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang returned to scoring form with a double as Arsenal’s rise up the Premier League table continued with a comfortable 3-0 win over Newcastle on Monday. The Gunners were facing an unlikely battle for survival less than a month ago, but 13 points from a possible 15 have lifted Mikel Arteta’s men into 10th and within seven points of the top four.
Despite Aubameyang doubling his tally of league goals from open play this season, it was again Arsenal’s dynamic young duo of Emile Smith Rowe and Bukayo Saka who caught the eye as the later slotted home the hosts’ second goal in between the captain’s brace.
The emergence of Smith Rowe has helped turned Arsenal’s fortunes around in recent weeks since Arteta began to put his faith in the 20-year-old ahead of expensive recruits Willian and Nicolas Pepe. Smith Rowe’s inviting cut-back was swept home from just inside the area by Saka for his third goal in five league games.
Aubameyang then had an even easier task to slot home just his fifth league goal of the season into an empty net after Cedric Soares just managed to keep the ball in play with a low cross. Another headache for Arteta is also set to be solved with Mesut Ozil on the verge of agreeing on a move to Fenerbahce.
Ozil has been the highest earner at the club since signing a deal worth a reported £350,000 ($475,000) a week in January 2018 but has not featured under Arteta since March.