Feb 22, 2014 at 3pm UK at ​Emirates Stadium
Giroud (5', 31'), Rosicky (42'), Koscielny (57')
FT(HT: 3-0)

Match Analysis: Arsenal 4-1 Sunderland

Match Analysis: Arsenal 4-1 Sunderland
© Getty Images
Sports Mole looks back over Arsenal's 4-1 victory against Sunderland at the Emirates Stadium in the Premier League.

Olivier Giroud put his personal problems behind him to score twice as Arsenal won 4-1 against Sunderland at the Emirates Stadium in the Premier League this afternoon.

The French striker scored both of his goals within the opening 31 minutes, before Tomas Rosicky added a third just before the break.

Shortly after the restart Laurent Koscielny headed in a fourth for the home team, before Sunderland substitute Emanuele Giaccherini fired in a late consolation.

Below, Sports Mole has looked back over the clash to determine if the result was a fair one.

Match statistics

Shots: 12
On target: 9
Possession: 65%
Corners: 7
Fouls: 10

Shots: 7
On target: 3
Possession: 35%
Corners: 3
Fouls: 11

Was the result fair?

In truth, Arsenal won't win many matches as easily as they did this one. They had more shots, created more chances and had the greater of the possession. If anything, the winning margin could have been even bigger. Put simply, the scoreline itself will tell you that the hosts were deserving victors.

Arsenal's performance

Sunderland may not have been good today, but you can only beat what is put in front of you and Arsenal did that convincingly. They needed a positive start after the loss to Bayern Munich and they got just that when Giroud broke the deadlock in the fifth minute. That eased the nerves and lifted the confidence, which in turn saw Arsene Wenger's side string together a number of easy on the eye passing moves. With the likes of Aaron Ramsey, Theo Walcott and Mesut Ozil injured, manager Wenger will have been pleased to see just how creative and clinical his players were.

Sunderland's performance

Had Sunderland not had a League Cup final next weekend, they may well have put up more of a fight. As it was, a number of players look frightened to get injured, thus ruling themselves out of the showpiece event. They continually stood off Arsenal in midfield areas and were punished on four occasions, which could have ended up being more. Manager Gus Poyet will no doubt be looking for more commitment and desire from his players at Wembley otherwise they could well be on the receiving end of a similar scoreline.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Jack Wilshere: The England international did not get his name on the scoresheet, but he was at the centre of everything that Arsenal did well today. He showed great confidence in possession and despite being assigned a deeper role, he often could be found popping up on the edge of the Sunderland box. To round off an impressive display, Wilshere was heavily involved in his side's first and third goals.

Biggest gaffe

Poyet recently claimed that Santiago Vergini could challenge the suspended Wes Brown for a regular spot in the starting lineup, but after today, the latter's place is pretty safe. The Argentine looked out of his depth early on and it culminated in him gifting Arsenal their second goal. He attempted to play the back to his own goalkeeper without looking, but Giroud was alert to intercept and then slot the ball underneath Vito Mannone.

Referee performance

Such was Sunderland's desire not to tackle, particularly during the first half, that it was a relatively straightforward afternoon's work for Andre Marriner. There was not a big call for the man with the whistle to make.

What next?

Arsenal: A week today the Gunners will travel to the Britannia Stadium for a Premier League encounter with Stoke City.

Sunderland: Poyet's men will now turn their attention to next Sunday and a Wembley meeting with Manchester City in the final of the League Cup.

Arsenal's French striker Olivier Giroud celebrates scoring the opening goal of the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Sunderland at The Emirates Stadium in north London on February 22, 2014
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