Arsenal’s new signings Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are already making their considerable presence felt at the Emirates.
The former Borussia Dortmund teammates made their first starts together at their new club on Saturday evening, and are already showing that they have not lost any of that link-up play from their time together in the Bundesliga.
Just as they did against Crystal Palace two weeks ago, the Gunners went in at the half-time break 4-0 up, this time against Sam Allardyce’s Everton. Midfielder Aaron Ramsey scored two of those goal in another strong performance, with Laurent Koscielny getting the other in a game that was put to bed with three goals in the opening twenty minutes.
But it is the form of the new arrivals that will have Arsenal fans the most excited. Mkhitaryan, who lost some of his creative spark towards the end of his Man United career, quickly rediscovered it by playing the ball across the face of goal to set up Ramsey’s first goal inside the first seven minutes.
Towards the end of the first half, with Arsenal 3-0 up and the game effectively over, Aubameyang got in on the act. Mkhitaryan was again the supplier, feeding the ball through the Everton defence to the £56m forward, who duly chipped the ball over Jordan Pickford and into the net.
It didn’t get mucb better for Everton after the restart, even after Dominic Calvert-Lewin had pulled a goal back just after the hour mark. Mkhitaryan and Ramsey combined again with fifteen minutes remaining, and the Armenian, as if to remind Jose Mourinho and Man United exactly what they’d be missing supplied his third assist of the evening to set up the Welsh midfielder for his hat trick.
3 – Henrikh Mkhitaryan is the first Arsenal player to provide three or more assists in a Premier League game since Santi Cazorla (4) vs Wigan in May 2013. Treble.
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) February 3, 2018
Hattrick of assists for Mkhitaryan. Man of the Match by a mile.
— Chris Wheatley (@ChrisWheatley_) February 3, 2018
Three assists for Mkhitaryan so far in #ARSEVE ?
Laying them on a ?️ pic.twitter.com/Gev7mxynMt
— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) February 3, 2018
Mkhitaryan 3 assists. Love that player
— Jan Aage Fjortoft (@JanAageFjortoft) February 3, 2018
With Arsenal still in the hunt for a top four finish at the end of the season, Mkhitaryan could be a vital player for the Gunners in their run-in.