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Arsenal put five past Burnley – and they wanted more

Bukayo Saka’s double helped Arsenal earn a classy 5-0 win over lowly Burnley as the Gunners again closed the gap on Premier League leaders Liverpool to two points.

The Gunners controlled matters from start to finish as Martin Odegaard blasted the Gunners into a fourth-minute lead, before Saka doubled the lead from the spot after Leandro Trossard was fouled by Maxime Esteve.

Saka blasted in a third moments after half-time to make it seven goals in his last six Premier League games before Trossard curled in a fourth after the hour mark.

There was even time for Kai Havertz to get in on the act with a solo run and finish – as Arsenal made it 21 goals in five Premier League matches since the winter break.

Kai Havertz scores Arsenal's fifth goal at Turf Moor
Image: Kai Havertz rounded the scoring with Arsenal’s fifth

Despite their dominant form at the moment, Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta said his team wanted even more from the fruitful afternoon.

“I see certain behaviours on the pitch that they want more still – and they are not satisfied with certain things. And that’s a great sign I think,” he told Sky Sports after the game.

“They wanted more, the way they tracked back on the 95th minute is just incredible. It shows the desire everybody has in the squad – the finishers, starters – the players that are not there. It was a really good afternoon.”

Burnley, meanwhile, have got eight games without a win and remain seven points from safety.

Player ratings

Burnley: Trafford (4); Assignon (5), O’Shea (5), Esteve (4), Delcroix (5); Ramsey (6), Berge (6), Brownhill (5), Odobert (6); Fofana (5), Amdouni (4)

Subs used: Gudmundsson (6), Taylor (6), Rodriguez (5), Vitinho (n/a), Bruun Larsen (n/a)

Arsenal: Raya (7); White (7), Saliba (7), Gabriel (7), Kiwior (8); Rice (8), Odegaard (8), Havertz (8); Saka (9), Trossard (8), Martinelli (7)

Subs used: Nketiah (6), Cedric (6), Nelson (6), Jorginho (n/a), Smith Rowe (n/a)

Player of the match: Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)

How Arsenal made the Clarets blue

Burnley actually held most of the ball and did the early running in the opening five minutes – but Arsenal hit them on the break for their first attack.

Team news headlines

  • Burnley named an unchanged line-up from the team who lost 3-1 to Liverpool on Saturday. Charlie Taylor returned to the bench and came on at the hour mark.
  • Arsenal also named an unchanged team from their 6-0 win over West Ham, with Emile Smith Rowe returning to the bench after injury.

Declan Rice fed Gabriel Martinelli down the left and he cut the ball back to Odegaard on the edge of the area. The Arsenal captain, completely unmarked and under no pressure, took a touch before firing past James Trafford at the near post.

A sweet strike by Martin Odegaard gives Arsenal an early lead at Burnley
Image: A sweet strike by Martin Odegaard gives Arsenal an early lead at Burnley

Minutes later, it could and should have been two. Trossard was released by Saka for a one-on-one and instead of shooting, the Belgian cut inside in an attempt to round Trafford, who got a palm on the ball towards safety.

Gabriel headed a Saka corner over, while Burnley’s only chance of the first half came from Wilson Odobert – whose cross-cum-shot was parried by David Raya.

But it was Arsenal who made it two before the break. Trossard was clipped by Esteve in the box and that allowed Saka to beat Trafford from 12 yards.

Bukayo Saka celebrates after doubling Arsenal's lead at Burnley from the penalty spot
Image: Saka celebrates after doubling Arsenal’s lead at Burnley from the penalty spot

Seconds after half-time, Saka was at it again. Odegaard played him in down the right and the England winger blasted a right-footed shot high into the roof of the net.

Burnley’s afternoon went from bad to worse as Aaron Ramsey limped off with an apparent knee injury, with the young midfielder needing oxygen before being stretchered off the pitch.

Trossard missed two chances from Martinelli passes before getting Arsenal’s fourth – pouncing on a loose ball in the area before curling in with his left foot after Havertz’s shot was blocked.

Leandro Trossard celebrates after scoring Arsenal's fourth goal at Burnley
Image: Leandro Trossard celebrates after scoring Arsenal’s fourth goal at Burnley

The German eventually did get in on the act as Havertz latched onto Jakub Kiwior’s quick long throw before taking the ball down in the box and slotting home.

Arsenal rang the changes ahead of their Champions League last-16 tie at Porto in midweek, with Burnley’s agony compounded by 10 minutes of stoppage time. Arsenal used it to parade their advantage in the rain.

Arteta: I expected a different afternoon

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Mikel Arteta reacted to Arsenal’s 5-0 win against Burnley at Turf Moor and said that they need to maintain the momentum they have set in recent weeks.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta to Sky Sports: “Today was a really tricky game – a difficult place to come and win. Burnley have been really good, competitive and consistent against the top sides and I expected a very different afternoon.

“It’s true with the early goals we scored, we made it easier and the game flowed better for us. But I still think they’re a really good side.

“Individually we are in a really good moment and Bukayo is in a good moment. We need to maintain that. We have that momentum and it’s a case of still doing it. There are still things we can do better so we keep going.

“The only bad side to the game was Aaron Ramsey who I think had a really bad injury so I would like to wish him the best and hopefully it’s not a bad one.

“We have to believe we can win every game. We are approaching every game in that way. When the team has that belief and confidence, something good can happen.

“But we know the standards and what it will require, we have to keep elevating those standards. I believe we can do that as I see them in training every single day. Let’s go for it.”

Kompany: We felt we turned a corner recently

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Vincent Kompany admitted that Burnley were not good enough against Arsenal as they were beaten 5-0, but they can not dwell on the defeat.

Burnley manager Vincent Kompany to Sky Sports: “Not good enough. I think in moments like this, you take it on the chin. They were better than us but we didn’t perform to our best possible level.

“For many games now, the last 14 of 15 of them, we didn’t question the performance. But today was a bad performance which can happen sometimes.

“We can’t let it affect the next games. This week will be one where we focus on the next game and make sure we stick together and show what we want to be about.

“My goal is to always be there with the players. In tough times, even more. We felt we were building to something positive and felt we could turn a corner. In a day like today, you probably find other people around you will doubt about this, but it’s important to stay our course and be ready for the next game.

“The belief is there of course. But our priority now is: we can’t dwell on this game. We played against a very good side, we have to move on and all eyes on Palace now.”

On understanding fans leaving early: “Of course. It’s 5-0 for the opposition. I haven’t been at any club in the past where the fans are standing and clapping for you at the end of a game like this.

“It’s tough, it’s part of the difficult moments when you lose a game. But you can be top of the league and lose a game. It’s the same as everyone else.”

On Aaron Ramsey’s injury: “It didn’t look good. I don’t know the extent of the injury yet. I wish him well, hope he recovers and that it’s not as bad as we think.”

Analysis: Arsenal are looking complete

GRAPHIC

Sky Sports’ Sam Blitz:

Arsenal began the weekend dreaming about Kylian Mbappe. They will end it questioning if they actually need him.

Since the winter break, when all the talk was about whether the Gunners needed to strengthen up front, Mikel Arteta’s side have 21 goals in five Premier League matches. That run includes five goals past Crystal Palace, six in the West Ham net, now five against Burnley.

Still, some will claim Arsenal need that 30-goal-a-season striker. But three reasons suggest they don’t.

The first: among those 21 goals since January 20, there have been nine different goalscorers – showing a desire to spread firepower around the team through personnel. Arsenal don’t need an Erling Haaland if they have multiple players on 15 goals and defenders contributing from set-pieces.

The second: Arsenal have a starlet in Bukayo Saka who can take on the goalscoring mantle, if one star is needed. “I have no idea, I don’t think Bukayo needs much motivating,” said Arteta after the game when asked if Saka was affected by the Mbappe links.

The 22-year-old has 12 goals this season including seven in his last six league games and is right in the mix for the Golden Boot this season.

And the third: Arsenal aren’t conceding, meaning less is needed from up top. While they’ve scored 21 at one end, they’ve conceded just twice at the other. One was an own goal against Liverpool, the other a late consolation at Nottingham Forest.

In short, Arsenal are looking complete.

What’s next?

Burnley travel to Crystal Palace in the Premier League next Saturday in what could be key in the battle against relegation; kick-off 3pm.

Arsenal resume their Champions League campaign on Wednesday as they travel to Porto in the last 16 first leg; kick-off 8pm. They are back in Premier League action next Saturday as they host Newcastle; kick-off 8pm.

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