What chance did Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang have?! Winners and losers as Frank Lampard sends former Arsenal captain to the wolves in disastrous Chelsea showing

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Martin Odegaard and Granit Xhaka shone as the Gunners blitzed their London rivals at the Emirates Stadium with three first-half goals

Arsenal piled even more misery on a shambolic Chelsea side on Tuesday as they returned to the top of the Premier League with a 3-1 success at the Emirates Stadium. It was a much needed victory for Mikel Arteta’s side following a run of four games without a win, and they now sit two points clear of Manchester City at the top, though Pep Guardiola’s champions have two games in hand and can return to the summit with victory against West Ham on Wednesday.

For Chelsea, it was another horrendous night. They have now lost all six games they have played under interim boss Frank Lampard and look completely devoid of any ideas or creativity.

Martin Odegaard was the star of the show for Arsenal, scoring twice in the opening half an hour before Gabriel Jesus added a third before the break.

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Chelsea did at least improve slightly after the interval as the hosts eased off the gas, and they did pull a goal back through Noni Madueke to give their long-suffering supporters something to cheer.

GOAL breaks down the winners & losers from Emirates Stadium...

  1. WINNER: Jakub Kiwior
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    WINNER: Jakub Kiwior

    This was a big night for Kiwior, who was handed his first Premier League start following his arrival in January,.

    After weeks of persisting with Rob Holding in the absence of William Saliba, Arteta finally turned to the Poland international, despite his concerns over playing two left footed centre-backs together.

    And Kiwior produced an excellent display in the heart of the defence, one that certainly left you questioning why the Arsenal manager has waited so long to give him his chance. He was composed, read the game well and he stepped out and was aggressive when he needed to be.

    The 23-year-old would have known before the game that his performance was going to come under scrutiny and he dealt with that pressure incredibly well. You would think he is now a certainty to start at Newcastle on Sunday. 

  2. LOSER: Cesar Azpilicueta
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    LOSER: Cesar Azpilicueta

    It almost feels wrong to single out an individual after such a shambolic Chelsea performance. Collectively they were a complete shambles, especially in the first half when they played with an air of a team who simply didn’t want to be out on the pitch.

    But in Azpilicueta they have a player who is clearly now well past his best and looks completely unable to raise his team. While Martin Odegaard was producing a captain’s performance for Arsenal, Chelsea’s skipper could do nothing to get his team out of the hole they were in. He was slow, cumbersome and looked well out of his depth all evening.

    To be fair to Azpilicueta, there were others all around him who were equally as culpable. The way Raheem Sterling allowed Odegaard to run off him for Arsenal’s second goal was criminal.

    But when you are struggling like Chelsea are you need your captain to step up. Azpilicueta looks completely unable to do that.

  3. WINNER: Martin Odegaard

    WINNER: Martin Odegaard

    Arenal’s captain came in for quite a bit of criticism following the defeat at Manchester City, both in terms of his performance and his leadership abilities. But the Norway international responded with a real leader’s performance against Chelsea, setting the ball rolling with two superb first-half goals.

    The first was a thing of beauty, thumping a wonderful first-time finish in off the underside of the bar from the edge of the box. The second wasn’t quite as spectacular, but it was still an impressive finish from Granit Xhaka’s cutback.

    Odegaard now has 14 league goals this season, that sees him just one behind Gabriel Martinelli in the race to be Arsenal’s top scorer. Considering he started the season with many questioning whether he scored enough goals, that is quite an emphatic response from the playmaker.

  4. LOSER: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
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    LOSER: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

    This was Aubameyang’s first start for Chelsea since Arsenal’s win at Stamford Bridge in November. On that occasion, the former Gunners striker managed just eight touches of the ball in 64 minutes before he was replaced.

    He went one better this time around, touching the ball nine times before he was dragged off at half-time by Frank Lampard. Four of those touches, however, came from kick-offs.

    It was an utterly miserable return to the Emirates Stadium for Aubameyang, who had every one of his nine touches booed by the home side.

  5. WINNER: Granit Xhaka
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    WINNER: Granit Xhaka

    Xhaka turned into a mercurial playmaker in the first half, setting up all three of Arsenal’s goals. The third assist may have been a bit fortunate, but the first two were excellent, with the Switzerland international perfectly picking out Odegaard with balls in from the left.

    Xhaka now has eight assists this season, as well as seven goals. It’s been a hugely impressive campaign from the 30-year-old playing in his more advanced midfield position.

    Chelsea struggled to pick him up all night, and only a save from Kepa Arrizabalaga denied him what would have been a deserved goal in the second half. 

  6. LOSER: Frank Lampard
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    LOSER: Frank Lampard

    Another game, another defeat for Lampard. Chelsea’s interim manager has now lost all six games since he returned to the club to replace the dismissed Graham Potter. It looked a bizarre appointment when it was made and it has proven to be a complete disaster.

    His team were a shambles at the Emirates. There didn’t seem to be any sort of plan or tactical set-up, especially in the first half when they were all over the place.

    His decision to start Aubameyang, a player who hadn’t started a game for six months, just felt desperate. It was almost unfair to bring a player in from the cold in such a desperate situation. It never looked like it was going to work and that’s how it proved.