Arsene Wenger said Arsenal need to be perfect from now to stand any chance of competing with Leicester City and Tottenham for the English Premier League title. While it wasn't a perfect jaw-dropping performance, Arsenal certainly put in a professional 90 minutes out at Goodison Park, comfortable seeing off Everton 2-0.
Both the goals came in the first half, with Danny Welbeck finishing off a typically Arsenal move, before Alex Iwobi scored his first ever Premier League goal in his first ever Premier League start to make the game safe.
After a torrid week, which saw the Gunners knocked out of two cup competitions, the pressure was certainly on the away team to come up with a positive result.
Everton, though, were the team who started the brighter – well for the first 90 seconds at least – with Seamus Coleman storming down the right a couple of times and whipping in a couple of crosses. Arsenal defended those well – as they did every single Everton cross over the course of the game – and once they got their footing into the game, there was only one team in it.
Welbeck score the first goal in the seventh minute of the game, and it was a thing of beauty too. Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil exchanged passes with the former then playing a perfect through ball for Welbeck, who ran in behind the Everton defence, dribbled the ball around the goalkeeper before slotting it into an empty net.
Arsenal could have easily made it 2-0 a little later – Alexis Sanchez should have had a penalty -- as they dominated this Everton side, who should have been buoyed really by their stirring performance against Chelsea last weekend, but it took until the 42nd minute for the away side to score the safety goal.
It was off a quick counter-attack, with Francis Coquelin won the ball in Arsenal's own half, allowing Hector Bellerin, celebrating his 21st birthday, to clip a beautiful long ball over the top of the Everton defence for Iwobi. The youngster showed confidence and strength to hold off Ramiro Funes Mori, before slotting the ball through Joel Robles' legs.
The second half saw plenty of Everton possession, but very little penetration as the Gunners picked up what was a quite routine 2-0 victory. The gap to Leicester now is eight points and Tottenham three, but Arsenal need eight more such performances to stand any chance of lifting that title.