Arsenal grabbed three precious points and pushed up to fifth in the table thanks to a stunning attacking performance, spearheaded by Theo Walcott, who started in the centre forward role. Click here to see highlights from another high-scoring game at the Madejski stadium.
Szczesny 7 – Before the ten minute spell when Reading scored twice, Wojciech was rarely tested. He was impressive in the air, making strong catches when the home side threatened with crosses.
Gibbs 6.5 – A good attacking display, supporting Podolski and whipping in a powerful cross for the first goal.
Vermaelen 7 – Solid performance from our captain, who was rarely troubled. Arguably at fault for the first Reading goal, as he lunged forward to intercept the ball, but failed to cut the ball out.
Mertesacker 6 – Like the rest of the defence, didn’t have much to do. However, he seemed oblivious to Kebe’s movement for the second goal, allowing the winger to ghost behind the defence and score.
Sagna 7 – Solid game from the ever-consistent defender. His passing was accurate and, although he didn’t need to attack too much, he was often hugging the touchline, giving us a crossing option.
Arteta 7.5 – He was more dynamic than usual – his passing range was far more varied and he allowed Arsenal to move seamlessly from defence to attack.
Wilshere 8 – Another fine performance from the returning midfielder. His tackling was strong and clean, and his passing was typically excellent. Superb pass to play in Podolski for the fourth goal.
Cazorla 9 – Absolutely majestic. He netted a hattrick and grabbed an assist too. But it wasn’t just his ability in and around the box – he drove Arsenal forward with slick passing and clever dribbling.
Podolski 8 – Well-taken goal after a sublime first touch. He was more involved than usual, because of his ability to find space, and the midfield utilised both wings very well. He also produced a decent cross for Cazorla’s headed goal.
Oxlade-Chamberlain 7 – His speed and direct approach was a noticeable addition to the side. Not frightened to shoot from distance, and will be disappointed he didn’t manage to get on the scoresheet.
Walcott 7.5 – He played on the line of the defence, which gave our midfield a bit more space than we are used to. Although he should have scored before he did – he failed to score from a one-on-one opportunity – he took his goal with great composure.
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