Arsenal's Giroud rebounds to score against Everton in English Premier League
Olivier Giroud bounced back from a wretched midweek performance in the Champions League to set Arsenal on their way to a 2-0 win over Everton that trimmed the gap to second-place Manchester City in the Premier League yesterday.
The France striker, who missed several chances and was substituted early in a 3-1 home defeat to Monaco on Wednesday, volleyed in a Mesut ˆzil's corner to give Arsenal a 39th-minute lead at the Emirates.
Substitute Tomas Rosicky added a second goal from a deflected shot in the 89th to seal a seventh win in eight league games, keeping Arsenal in third place and only four behind City. The champions lost 2-1 at Liverpool earlier yesterday.
"The result was very significant for the rest of the season," Arsenal manager ArsËne Wenger said. "It is tight at the top of the table. It is down to consistency."
Giroud started despite his woes against Monaco, and the striker responded with a fourth goal in his last four games.
"ArsËne Wenger gave me the possibility to bounce back," Giroud said. "We wanted to do that together, and I think we did well."
Everton were challenging for Champions League football last season, but now they are in danger of being sucked into the relegation scrap. With only one win in the league since December 20, Roberto Martinez's team is six points off the bottom three and
only threatened sporadically against Arsenal.
"We didn't deserve the score line, that is for sure," Martinez said. "I thought we did many good things.
"It will take a bit of momentum in terms of results. If you get two or three wins, everything changes."