Arsenal advanced into the fifth round of the FA Cup with a comfortable 2-1 win over fellow Premier League side Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium.
The Gunners made a great start to the game and were 2-0 up by the half-hour mark, with their goals coming from Bukayo Saka and Eddie Nketiah.
Bournemouth did pull a goal back late on through Sam Surridge, but it turned out to be just a mere consolation.
Mikel Arteta’s men took the lead in the sixth minute when Gabriel Martinelli played in Saka, who smashed his effort into the back of the net, via the underside of the crossbar.
Arsenal doubled their lead in the 26th minute, with the aforementioned scorer turning provider for Nketiah, who scored his first goal since returing from his loan spell at Leeds United.
Arsenal had a few chances to kill the tie off completely, but Bournemouth hung on and eventually pulled a goal back in second half stoppage-time when Surridge drove his effort into the net, but they didn’t leave themselves enough time to grab a late equaliser.
Here’s how we rated the Arsenal players after the game:
Emiliano Martinez - 6
A reliable and solid performance from Martinez, who made few routine saves and was good with his distribution. Slightly unlucky that he couldn’t finish the night with a clean sheet.
Hector Bellerin - 7
A solid performance from captain Bellerin, whose recent return to the side has been a good one. His defensive work has seemingly improved since his return.
Shkodran Mustafi - 7
Mustafi had a solid game at the heart of Arsenal defence, where he was good on the ball and very assured off it. The German picked up an injury around the hour mark and unfortunately, he had to be stretchered off.
Sokratis - 6
Sokratis isn’t the most pretty centre-back on the eye, but he did his job well defensively. His work on the ball can be improved, something for Arteta to contend with, as the manager seemingly wants his side to play out from the back.
Bukayo Saka - 9
Another excellent performance in the left-back position from Saka. He scored the first goal and provided the assist for Nketiah.
Granit Xhaka - 6
Xhaka’s passing was wayward at times, but he made up by working hard off the ball and by covering the right spaces to help the back-line. A steady game from the Swiss international.
Matteo Guendouzi - 7
A good outing for Guendouzi, who was physically strong both on and off the ball. He is a very mature player.
Nicolas Pepe - 6
A quiet game from Pepe who didn’t really perform well in the final third. He worked hard for the team and never shied away from trying though. Was rightly subbed off with around 20 minutes to go.
Joe Willock - 8
Willock had an outstanding game in the advanced midfield role. He was full of energy and that effort was matched by his creativity and his clever movements off the ball.
Gabriel Martinelli - 7
A hard-working performance from Martinelli, who assisted the first goal but wasn’t at his very best in the final third. He kept trying and worked well to close the opposition down as quickly as possible.
Eddie Nketiah - 7
Leading the line for the first time under Arteta since coming back from Elland Road, Nketiah looked sharp in the first half and took his goal well.
(SUB) Rob Holding - 6
Holding came on after Mustafi was stretchered off. He did just enough to help the team see the game out.
(SUB) Dani Ceballos - 4
Playing his first game in a while, Ceballos was rusty with some of this touches. It looks like he needs more game time to recover his touch.
(SUB) Ainsley Maitland-Niles - N/A
Came on in second-half stoppage time and had very little time to impact the game.