Arsenal destroys Man Utd to give Arteta the first victory

London, January 2 (AFP) Mikel Arteta got everything he asked for in his first victory as an Arsenal coach with an unbridled first 45 minutes since the Gunners won a 2-0 victory over Manchester United in the Emirates.

Nicolas Pepe and Sokratis Papastathopoulos scored the goals to secure only a second victory in 16 games.

Arsenal started the game three times more points in the first four than the relegation zone, but a first home victory in 87 days brings Arteta's men to tenth position and four points from United in fifth.

I am very satisfied with the performance, I am even more satisfied with the result, Arteta said after his third game in charge.

Everything I wanted to see in the field, I saw tonight.

There were signs of encouragement for Arsenal in Arteta's home debut against Chelsea on Sunday when only a late collapse saw a 1-0 lead in a 2-1 loss.

However, this time the hosts saw the game as a lousy performance by United raised new questions about their chances of finishing in the top four.

We are currently suffering from maintaining that intensity level of the first halves, Arteta added.

That will come, but I also liked the resistance they showed. I liked watching them suffer together.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men were again stripped of Paul Pogba, who faces another month after an operation for a problematic ankle injury that has kept him out for most of the season.

Pogba's absence is still evident in United's inability to create when he is denied the opportunity to fight back and could not recover after falling behind from the beginning.

After scoring the first goal, they seemed to have a lot of energy, Solskjaer said.

They were the best team. They were aggressive, recovered the ball and it was difficult to remove the ball. For the first time, Arsenal started with all Pepe, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette and Mesut Ozil together in attack and Arteta's bold choice gave him dividends in eight minutes.

Pepe scored only his second Premier League goal in the open game since a 72 million Lille move when he swept the center of Sead Kolasinac in the back post.

Suddenly, the Ivorian was filled with confidence when he turned and turned to Luke Shaw before crossing to Aubameyang to make a volley.

Lacazette then rolled Harry Maguire easily in one night to forget the world's most expensive defender before launching his shot through the goal.

David de Gea is another of United's most experienced stars who suffers an alarming fall in form and a bad authorization from the Spanish offered another view of Pepe's goal, whose long-range attack returned from the post.

The dominance of the first half of Arsenal was rewarded with a second goal before the half-time interval, since De Gea could only launch Lacazette's header from a corner towards the danger area and Sokratis threw himself to shoot at the roof of the net.

As the energy levels of the hosts fell from the first 45 frantic minutes, United were allowed to dictate the game, but did not have the cunning to make their possession count. Andreas Pereira had the best chance of giving United a lifeline, but he shot at the side net from Nemanja Matic's clever reverse pass. We have to be honest and physically admit that we are not ready, but we must show heart and this team is ready to change many things, said Arsenal defender David Luiz. (AFP) APA APA

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