Sanchez at the double as Gunners sink Baggies

Arsenal leapfrogged Manchester City into third place in the Premier League standings as an Alexis Sanchez brace secured a 2-0 victory – their 500th in the Premier League – over a lacklustre West Brom at the Emirates on Thursday evening.

  • Arsenal 2 West Brom 0
  • Sanchez fires Gunners ahead early on
  • Hosts double lead through Sanchez free-kick
  • McAuley header hits the post
  • Arsenal move two points clear of Man City

Match summary

The home side claimed the lead just six minutes into the contest, Alexis Sanchez slotting home from outside the area to continue his recent good form.

And the former Barcelona forward doubled his tally in the latter stages of the first half, finding the bottom-left corner with a curling free-kick to put the Gunners firmly in control.

West Brom improved slightly after the half-time break but failed to show a cutting edge in front of goal as Arsenal comfortably claimed all three points on offer.

Full report

Following a muted start to the contest at the Emirates, the match sprang to life in the sixth minute when Alexis Sanchez fired the Gunners in front with a sublime piece of individual skill.

The Chile international collected a pass from Aaron Ramsey, all of 35 yards out, before spinning away his marker and firing a thunderbolt of a shot past Baggies keeper Ben Foster and into the bottom-left corner.

Arsenal went close to adding to their advantage on two separate occasions in a one-sided opening 25 minutes, but efforts from Ramsey and Hector Bellerin failed to find the mark.

West Brom went agonisingly close to drawing level just moments before the half-hour mark when Gareth McAuley hit the post with a header from just six yards out, but that was their only real chance of note as Arsenal quickly regained control of proceedings.

Bellerin and Mohamed Elneny, and Mesut Ozil all went close for the hosts, before Sanchez doubled his tally in the 38th minute with a curling free-kick into the bottom-left corner, following a foul on Ramsey.

@alexis_officia1’s free-kick made it 2-0 and three points for #Arsenal. #AFCvWBA #Alexis #TwoNil

A photo posted by Arsenal Official (@arsenal) on

And that was the last action of note in the first half as Arsenal saw out the remaining minutes with a ease.

The Gunners started the second half brightly and tested foster after just three minutes of play, striker Olivier Giroud seeing his shot from the left side of the box kept out by the gloveman.

West Brom hit back with a chance of their own in the 51st minute but Gunners goalkeeper Petr Cech was alert to the danger, snapping up James McClean’s goal-bound header with relative ease.

Arsenal didn’t ease up on their opponents, however, with Mesut Ozil and Alex Iwobi both going close to adding to the home side’s advantage.

West Brom weren’t going down without a fight, as Salomon Rondon went close to pulling one back for Tony Pulis’ side before team-mate Jonny Evans smashed a long-range effort wide of the right-hand post just one minute later.

The Baggies had one last chance in the 85th minute, but Claudio Yacob fired wide of the mark, while Arsenal went close to adding a third through efforts from Giroud and Joel Campbell.