Arsenal extended their lead at the top of the Premier League to five points with victory over Liverpool at Emirates Stadium.

This game began as a meeting between the top two sides in the table and Arsenal showed resilience and quality to maintain their fine start to the season and stretch their advantage after Chelsea's surprise loss at Newcastle United.

Santi Cazorla gave Arsenal the lead with a fine first-half strike after his header struck the post and Aaron Ramsey scored his 10th goal of this campaign with a spectacular long-range effort on the hour.

Arsenal on song

  • The Gunners have taken 25 points out of the last available 27
  • They are the only team to score in each of their league matches this season; the only other in the top four divisions is Leyton Orient
  • Arsene Wenger's side have taken the lead in nine of their last 10 fixtures, the best record in the division

Luis Suarez hit the post for Liverpool late on but this was an impressive victory for manager Arsene Wenger's side as they recovered from the midweek Capital One Cup home defeat by Chelsea.

The result will be a bitter disappointment for Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers after they travelled to north London with optimism high after an excellent start to the season - but perhaps saw their own current status put into perspective by this defeat.

Cazorla and Ramsey will claim much of the credit with the goals that gave Arsenal the three points, but captain Mikel Arteta gave a midfield masterclass in which he overshadowed his Liverpool counterparts to set the platform for a vital win.

Liverpool suffered a setback prior to kick-off when England defender Glen Johnson was ruled out through illness. It gave an opportunity to local youngster Jon Flanagan, who had not made a Premier League start since April 2012.

Arsenal were without the injured Jack Wilshere but there was still more than enough ability on display in both sides to make the first 45 minutes a thrilling spectacle.

Wenger buoyed by 'convincing' display

Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet was in early action to save from Tomas Rosicky, while Jordan Henderson appeared to surprise himself with the way he was able to weave through Arsenal's defence unchallenged and shot tamely at Wojciech Szczesny.

Arsenal, arguably against the run of play, took the lead after 19 minutes with a goal that was a tribute to Cazorla's balance and technique. He recovered his position brilliantly to volley past Mignolet after hitting the woodwork with a header.

Liverpool then felt they were denied an equaliser by referee Martin Atkinson when Jordan Henderson tapped in Daniel Sturridge's pass after Suarez, who had been hauled down by Bacary Sagna, had taken a quick free-kick, apparently too quickly for Atkinson's liking.

Cazorla and Ramsey both tested Mignolet before the interval and Liverpool's uncertainty at the back persuaded Rodgers to take off Aly Cissokho, who had toiled desperately, and replace him with fit-again Philippe Coutinho at half-time.

It was Arsenal who created the moments of danger as Olivier Giroud failed to profit from ex-Gunners defender Kolo Toure's misplaced pass, then poked a shot straight at the keeper.

There was no mistake with Arsenal's second after 59 minutes. Ramsey made Liverpool pay for offering up time and space 25 yards out by finishing spectacularly high past Mignolet with the outside of his right foot.

Arsenal were better than us - Rodgers

Suarez had not been at his brilliant best but his threat was ever present, and he flashed a warning to Arsenal that this game was not done yet as he swerved an angled effort against the post with Szczesny beaten.

Arsenal were in control as the game drew to a close but were almost punished for a lack of concentration by Szczesny, who was so fortunate when his poor clearance struck Sturridge but bounced straight back into his arms.

Suarez then broke through seconds later but sent his finish wide of the target, a poor effort for a player of such high calibre.

Mesut Ozil almost added a third as Arsenal ended in comfort. And this was a performance that will have increased Wenger and Arsenal's confidence that they can maintain a serious challenge this season.

Lineup, Bookings (3) & Substitutions (5)

Arsenal

  • 01 Szczesny
  • 03 Sagna Booked
  • 28 Gibbs (Vermaelen - 78' )
  • 08 Arteta
  • 04 Mertesacker
  • 06 Koscielny
  • 07 Rosicky (Monreal - 72' )
  • 16 Ramsey
  • 12 Giroud
  • 11 Özil
  • 19 Cazorla (Jenkinson - 84' Booked )

Substitutes

  • 05 Vermaelen
  • 17 Monreal
  • 21 Fabianski
  • 23 Bendtner
  • 25 Jenkinson
  • 37 Akpom
  • 45 Hayden

Liverpool

  • 22 Mignolet
  • 38 Flanagan (Moses - 68' )
  • 20 Cissokho Booked (Coutinho - 45' )
  • 17 Sakho
  • 37 Skrtel
  • 04 K Touré
  • 08 Gerrard
  • 14 Henderson
  • 07 Suárez
  • 15 Sturridge
  • 21 Lucas

Substitutes

  • 01 Jones
  • 05 Agger
  • 10 Coutinho
  • 12 Moses
  • 24 Allen
  • 31 Sterling
  • 34 Kelly
Ref: Martin Atkinson
Att: 60,042

Match Stats

Shots

12 12

On target

7 4

Corners

3 5

Fouls

11 7

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Arsenal 2, Liverpool 0.

90:00 +3:07 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Arsenal 2, Liverpool 0.

90:00 +2:45

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Martin Skrtel.

90:00 +1:56

Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +1:56

Foul by Lucas Leiva (Liverpool).

89:53 Booking

Booking Carl Jenkinson (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

89:48

Foul by Carl Jenkinson (Arsenal).

89:48

Victor Moses (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

89:36

Attempt saved. Mesut Özil (Arsenal) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Olivier Giroud.

88:33

Foul by Mesut Özil (Arsenal).

88:33

Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

87:19

Attempt missed. Luis Suárez (Liverpool) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Philippe Coutinho with a through ball.

84:45

Offside, Arsenal. Per Mertesacker tries a through ball, but Olivier Giroud is caught offside.

83:51 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Carl Jenkinson replaces Santiago Cazorla.

82:22

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Aaron Ramsey.

82:21

Attempt saved. Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Steven Gerrard with a through ball.

81:52

Attempt saved. Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Philippe Coutinho.

80:44

Attempt missed. Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Luis Suárez.

78:30

Offside, Liverpool. Kolo Touré tries a through ball, but Luis Suárez is caught offside.

77:49 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Thomas Vermaelen replaces Kieran Gibbs because of an injury.

77:46

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

76:56

Delay in match Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal) because of an injury.

76:41

Attempt saved. Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Victor Moses.

75:05

Attempt saved. Mesut Özil (Arsenal) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Nacho Monreal.

72:58

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Kieran Gibbs.

72:56

Attempt blocked. Luis Suárez (Liverpool) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right is blocked. Assisted by Daniel Sturridge.

72:26

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Bacary Sagna.

71:57

Foul by Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal).

71:57

Victor Moses (Liverpool) wins a free kick on the right wing.

71:36

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

71:36

Mamadou Sakho (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

71:15 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Nacho Monreal replaces Tomas Rosicky.

70:25

Attempt missed. Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Jordan Henderson with a cross.

67:26 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Liverpool. Victor Moses replaces Jon Flanagan.

67:02

Tomas Rosicky (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.

67:02

Foul by Lucas Leiva (Liverpool).

65:30

Foul by Tomas Rosicky (Arsenal).

65:30

Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

63:25

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Martin Skrtel.

63:24

Attempt blocked. Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Santiago Cazorla.

62:22

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Bacary Sagna.

58:36 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Arsenal 2, Liverpool 0. Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box to the top left corner. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

58:25

Bacary Sagna (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.

58:25

Foul by Mamadou Sakho (Liverpool).

56:49

Attempt saved. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Santiago Cazorla.

54:44

Attempt missed. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the left.

49:27

Attempt missed. Jordan Henderson (Liverpool) right footed shot from the right side of the box is too high. Assisted by Luis Suárez with a cross.

48:26

Attempt missed. Luis Suárez (Liverpool) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right misses to the left. Assisted by Kolo Touré.

45:00

Second Half begins Arsenal 1, Liverpool 0.

45:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Liverpool. Philippe Coutinho replaces Aly Cissokho.

45:00 +1:04 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Arsenal 1, Liverpool 0.

44:39

Attempt missed. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Olivier Giroud.

41:48

Offside, Liverpool. Steven Gerrard tries a through ball, but Daniel Sturridge is caught offside.

33:58

Foul by Mesut Özil (Arsenal).

33:58

Aly Cissokho (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

33:05

Offside, Liverpool. Luis Suárez tries a through ball, but Daniel Sturridge is caught offside.

30:30

Attempt saved. Daniel Sturridge (Liverpool) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Steven Gerrard.

29:20

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

29:20

Lucas Leiva (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

27:58 Booking

Booking Aly Cissokho (Liverpool) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

27:51

Bacary Sagna (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.

27:51

Foul by Aly Cissokho (Liverpool).

27:40

Attempt saved. Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Tomas Rosicky.

25:45

Offside, Liverpool. Steven Gerrard tries a through ball, but Kolo Touré is caught offside.

25:17 Booking

Booking Bacary Sagna (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

24:35

Foul by Bacary Sagna (Arsenal).

24:35

Luis Suárez (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

23:51

Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.

23:51

Foul by Lucas Leiva (Liverpool).

20:46

Attempt missed. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

18:32 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Arsenal 1, Liverpool 0. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the high centre of the goal.

18:30

Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) hits the right post with a header from the centre of the box. Assisted by Bacary Sagna with a cross.

15:55

Tomas Rosicky (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

15:55

Foul by Kolo Touré (Liverpool).

15:40

Attempt blocked. Jordan Henderson (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

13:44

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Wojciech Szczesny.

13:05

Foul by Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal).

13:05

Luis Suárez (Liverpool) wins a free kick on the right wing.

8:47

Attempt missed. Jordan Henderson (Liverpool) left footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right.

5:54

Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

5:54

Dangerous play by Luis Suárez (Liverpool).

5:16

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Simon Mignolet.

5:14

Attempt saved. Tomas Rosicky (Arsenal) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Santiago Cazorla.

2:05

Hand ball by Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal).

0:33

Mamadou Sakho (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

0:33

Foul by Bacary Sagna (Arsenal).

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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