Gunners crush lowly Latics


Arsenal continued their Barclays Premier League resergence with an emphatic 4-0 victory over Wigan at the DW Stadium.

Mikel Arteta broke the deadlock for the visitors courtesy of an Ali Al-Habsi error in the Latics' goal, before defender Thomas Vermaelen doubled the lead a minute later.

It was more of the same in the second period, with Gervinho pouncing on a save from Robin Van Persie's shot to make it three before the Dutchman rounded off the scoring late on.

The game was slow to get going in the first 45 minutes, with the best chance of the opening exchanges falling to the hosts, with Arsenal full back Andre Santos clearing a Jordi Gomez effort off the line.

After failing to build on that start, Roberto Martinez's side faded out of the game, and on 38 minutes Arteta opened the scoring from distance. His shot moved slightly, but Oman international Al-Habsi should have done much better as the ball squirmed from his grasp.

It was a lead Arsene Wenger's side instantly built on, with centre back Vermaelen making it two goals in two games with a header that cannoned in off the post.

After the break, Aaron Ramsey was denied what appeared to be a clear-cut penalty after being pulled down in the box by Stephen Gohouri, but it was only a momentary release for the hosts as Gervinho increased the lead on 61 minutes.

Van Persie, who had been denied in the later stages of the first-half by a fine Al-Habsi save, again failed to beat the stopper, but his parry was tucked home from close range by the Ivorian international.

And the Dutch hitman was able to take his own total to 14 goals for the season in all competitions with 12 minutes left on the clock, finishing neatly after some good work from England winger Theo Walcott.

The defeat moves Wigan bottom of the Barclays Premier League pile, whilst the Gunners are up to fifth and on the verge of a Champions League place at the top of the table.

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