By Oladipupo Mojeed
Arsenal continued their push for the last Champions League qualifying spot as they walloped Stoke City 4-1 at the 365 Stadium on Saturday.
Olivier Giroud repaid manager Arsene Wenger’s faith in him after starting ahead of Danny Welbeck by putting the gunners up three minutes before half time.
The Frenchman taps in after Hector Bellerin’s break into the box from the right to score his 11th goal of the season in the league.
The Gunners picked up from where they left off in the first interval. Mesut Ozil doubled the visitors’ lead after his link play with Alexis Sanchez resulted in a goal.
The host got one back through Marko Arnautovic’s cross from the left which found Peter Crouch who headed past Petr Cech.
Replays, however, showed that the ball might have gone in off his hand with Wenger left fuming.
Alexis Sanchez later restored Arsenal’s two-goal lead, slotting home from inside the box, after getting on the end of a Hector Bellerin run to score his 50th Premier League goal for the Gunners.
Arsenal put the icing on the cake as substitute Aaron Ramsey wrestled away from Glen Johnson and cut across the box for Giroud to slide in his second of the match.
With the win, Wenger’s charges are a point behind Liverpool who occupy fourth place.
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