Arsenal sends Wenger off in style

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  • Arsenal sews up sixth
  • Burnley will finish seventh
  • Both headed for Europa League

Alex Iwobi had a world-class day, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang bagged a brace, and Arsenal sent Arsene Wenger off in style with a 5-0 win over Burnley in his Emirates Stadium finale on Sunday.

Iwobi set up multiple goals and had one himself, while Sead Kolasinac and Alexandre Lacazette also scored in the win.

The Gunners will finish sixth in the Premier League, ahead of Burnley.

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Arsenal was all over the Clarets despite the absence of playmaker Mesut Ozil, and went ahead inside the first 15 minutes.

Aubameyang slid to knock in an Alexandre Lacazette pass after a 1-2 between the Frenchman and Alex Iwobi.

Ashley Barnes suffered an apparent shoulder injury and had to leave the game with his arm in his jersey like a makeshift sling, clearing the way for Sam Vokes‘ introduction in the 22nd minute.

Nick Pope made a fine stop on Henrikh Mkhitaryan‘s deflected shot in the 44th, but it didn’t stay 1-0 into the break.

Lacazette darted to slap Hector Bellerin‘s cross into goal after another Iwobi set-up. If Lacazette didn’t hit it, Aubameyang may have, as Arsenal was looking fine on the day.

Kolasinac hit a 54th minute strike on the screws after being cued up by Jack Wilshere, and Arsenal was rolling at the Emirates when Mkhitaryan just missed curling a worldie around Pope.

Iwobi got a deserved goal for himself in the 64th when he belted a Mkhitaryan cutback into the upper 90. Little-to-no resistance from Burnley.

Aubameyang got is second in the 75th minute, and Arsenal then introduced old friend Per Mertesacker to the proceedings. That triggered loud applause from the Gunners faithful.

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Newcastle comes back to top Arsenal

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  • Lacazette scores early
  • Perez levels, assists winner
  • Slimani impacts off bench

Matt Ritchie‘s second half goal helped Newcastle United to a 2-1 comeback win over Arsenal at St. James’ Park on Sunday.

Alexandre Lacazette and Ayoze Perez traded first half goals as Newcastle stayed unbeaten at home in 2018.

The 10th place Magpies now have 41 points, 13 clear of relegation with five to play.

Arsenal remains sixth with 54 points.

Mesut Ozil, Jack Wilshere, and Henrikh Mkhitaryan were among the Arsenal players rested after completing its defeat of CSKA Moscow in Europa League play on Thursday.

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Though Newcastle was on the front foot, with Kenedy forcing an early save out of Petr Cech, the Gunners went ahead when Lacazette feasted off the work of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Magpies keeper Martin Dubravka stopped to collect an Alex Iwobi effort in the 20th minute as the Gunners grew further into the control.

Newcastle went level through Perez, who flicked DeAndre Yedlin‘s cross past Cech as the match reached the half hour mark.

Arsenal quickly regained control, and probably should’ve been ahead on multiple occasions including a point-blank miss by debutant Joe Willock.

Ritchie put Newcastle ahead in the 69th minute, with substitute Islam Slimani winning a header that Perez nudged to the Scot.

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WATCH: USMNT’s Yedlin assists for Newcastle; Auba to Laca for Arsenal

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Alexandre Lacazette and Ayoze Perez have traded first half goals as St. James’ Park as Newcastle United aims to stay unbeaten at home in 2018.

[ STREAM: Newcastle-Arsenal ]

Though Newcastle was on the front foot, with Kenedy forcing an early save out of Petr Cech, the Gunners went ahead when Lacazette feasted off the work of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Magpies keeper Martin Dubravka stopped to collect an Alex Iwobi effort in the 20th minute as the Gunners grew further into the control.

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Arsenal 3-0 Stoke City: PKs inspire win

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  • Controversial PK converted by Aubameyang
  • Gabonese striker completes brace, 86′
  • Lacazette scores second Gunners PK
  • Stoke remains in drop zone

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored a 75th minute penalty kick and then belted home an emphatic insurance goal as Arsenal beat Stoke City 3-0 at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.

Alexandre Lacazette also scored a penalty kick for the Gunners.

The win gives Arsenal 51 points, five more than seventh place Burnley and five less than fifth place Chelsea.

Stoke remains 19th, three points back of 17th place Crystal Palace.

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Xherdan Shaqiri threatened from the top of the 18 yard box, but curled his shot across the goal and outside the far post.

For Arsenal, it was all going through an active and armband-wearing Jack Wilshere. He cued up Aaron Ramsey for a blocked shot int he 29th minute. The corner came to nothing.

The second half saw Arsenal find better form as the match neared the hour mark, and Nacho Monreal forced Jack Butland into a low collection.

Shaqiri swept a shot into the arms of David Ospina with 23 minutes to play. The Swiss attacker struck the post with a corner kick moments later.

At the other end, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang joined Alexandre Lacazette in having in-tight shots blocked by the Stoke defense.

Arsenal won its penalty with controversy, as Bruno Martins Indi pushed the ball away from Mesut Ozil before the German hit the deck. It wasn’t a dive, but the referee had a rough angle and awarded a penalty that Aubameyang converted for 1-0.

Badou Ndiaye tried his luck from just outside the arc but swirled the ball around the post in the 82nd.

Butland made another pair of stops in the 85th, but Aubameyang scored off the ensuing corner to salt away all three points.

Stoke gave away another penalty when Ndiaye shouldered Lacazette to the turf in the 88th. Aubameyang deferred to Lacazette for the PK.

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Wenger misses press conference; Arsenal injury update

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Arsene Wenger was absent for his press conference on Thursday morning as the Arsenal boss was said to be feeling ill and had lost his voice.

Steve Bould, his assistant, stepped in for Wenger ahead of Arsenal’s home game against Stoke City on Sunday (Watch live, 8:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) and the former Arsenal center back revealed they will be playing their strongest team and not prioritizing their UEFA Europa League last eight tie next week.

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Bould gave an injury updated on Jack Wilshere and Alexandre Lacazette, with the former injured on England duty but he has been back training with the Gunners as they aim to secure sixth place in the Premier League table with a 16-straight home win against lowly Stoke City.

“Jack trained yesterday so he’s OK. Everybody else has come back as far as we’re aware. We’ll find out a bit more this morning, but Jack was OK yesterday,” Bould confirmed.

Bould was also asked if Lacazette, who injured his knee in February, would make his return to the Arsenal squad ahead of their key Europa League quarterfinal against CSKA Moscow next Thursday.

“That, I don’t know.  He trained yesterday but whether he’ll be involved at the weekend or not, I’m not entirely sure,” Lacazette said. “It’s important for him to have as much training and match time as we give him. I’m not entirely sure [whether he’ll be involved on Sunday], so I can’t give you an answer. Sorry!”

Wilshere shaking off an injury will be good news for Arsenal’s fans as many would have feared the central midfielder was set for yet more time on the sidelines.

Yes, missing England’s friendlies against the Netherlands and Italy was a blow for Wilshere, but it’s likely he will still be in Gareth Southgate‘s squad for the World Cup this summer. With his contract running out on July 1, Wilshere’s future at Arsenal remains uncertain but there’s no doubting that he’s now one of the first names on the team sheet.

As for Lacazette, he has scored nine times in his debut season in the PL at Arsenal but the Frenchman was going through a bit of a lean spell before he was injured and the arrival of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in January seemed to knock him down the pecking order slightly.

Having the clinical Frenchman back for a pivotal spell in the season will no doubt be a big boost and it seems likely he could jump off the bench on Sunday to get some key minutes.

The Europa League is Arsenal’s main aim now as they aim to qualify for the UEFA Champions League next season.