Arsenal are on the brink of securing Champions League football for next season after strolling to a resounding victory over a sorry Newcastle side.

Following a low-key start, the Gunners went ahead when Laurent Koscielny prodded home Santi Cazorla's free-kick.

Title chance lost to injuries - Wenger

Mesut Ozil tapped in to double their lead before half-time.

After the break, the German crossed for Olivier Giroud to head in the third and seal Newcastle's sixth consecutive Premier League defeat.

The season cannot end soon enough for Newcastle and their fans, who have watched a Champions League challenge evaporate in a dismal 2014, during which they have scored fewer goals - 10 - than any team in the division.

Arsenal, in contrast, are on the rise, having responded to their defeat by Everton on 6 April by winning their next three games to climb four points ahead of the Toffees with two games remaining.

Analysis

"Newcastle were in damage-limitation mode and they never really came out of that. Apart from Yoan Gouffran's one-on-one they never got anywhere near Arsenal.

"I've been quite taken by the reaction of the fans here, there is a really good feel-good factor at Arsenal."

The Gunners, who have spent more days on top of the table this season than any other side, offered a tantalising glimpse of what might have been had Ozil and Aaron Ramsey not been injured for such a crucial phase of the season.

What must have been particularly galling for Newcastle manager Alan Pardew, returning to the dugout for the first time since his seven-match touchline ban for headbutting Hull's David Meyler, was how quickly his team unravelled after frustrating Arsenal for the first 25 minutes.

The home crowd were just starting to voice their frustration at the Gunners' lack of cutting edge when they took the lead from a set-piece.

Cazorla's ball from deep was floated into a dangerous area over the Magpies' backline and Koscielny shrugged off Moussa Sissoko to meet it on the bounce and poke past Tim Krul.

The second goal arrived three minutes before the break when Giroud sprung the Newcastle offside trap to race on to a Mikel Arteta pass. Twice his shots were blocked by Krul, but the loose ball rolled across goal to present Ozil - who may have been marginally offside - with a simple finish.

Pardew's men, with their travelling support voicing their displeasure at owner Mike Ashley, finally created a chance in the 57th minute from a brisk counter-attack.

Alan Pardew admits 'pressure builds'

Loic Remy, making his first start since 1 March, controlled the ball and flicked it through to Yoan Gouffran, who outpaced Nacho Monreal but could not find a way past Wojciech Szczesny from a tight angle.

Arsenal were not on the back foot for long, and soon the victory was secure.

The outstanding Ramsey played Ozil into space on the left and his cross was expertly headed home by Giroud at the near post.

Lukas Podolski went close again when his side-footed shot fizzed past the upright before, at the other end, Paul Dummett's effort flew horribly wide to sum up a miserable night for the Magpies.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger:

"We had a slow and cautious start and progressively became stronger. After 20 minutes it was a good performance.

"Mesut Ozil is getting stronger in every game now. He is refreshed. Over Christmas he suffered physically. Now he looks physically sharp.

"The first season is always adaptation in the Premier League. But he has fantastic technique and passing. His assists and passes in the final third are excellent. We want some more goals from him - but that will come.

"We have come through a difficult period but the spirit in the side is healthy and strong and you see that when a team can bounce back after a big disappointment."

Alan Pardew plans a long-term stay at Newcastle despite growing unrest

Lineup, Bookings (5) & Substitutions (6)

Arsenal

  • 01 Szczesny
  • 03 Sagna Booked
  • 17 Monreal
  • 16 Ramsey Booked (Rosicky - 74' )
  • 04 Mertesacker
  • 06 Koscielny Booked
  • 19 Cazorla
  • 08 Arteta
  • 12 Giroud (Sanogo - 84' )
  • 11 Özil (Flamini - 74' )
  • 09 Podolski

Substitutes

  • 05 Vermaelen
  • 07 Rosicky
  • 20 Flamini
  • 21 Fabianski
  • 22 Sanogo
  • 25 Jenkinson
  • 29 Källström

Newcastle United

  • 01 Krul
  • 26 Debuchy (Yanga-Mbiwa - 84' )
  • 36 Dummett
  • 08 Anita
  • 06 Williamson
  • 02 Coloccini
  • 07 Sissoko Booked
  • 24 Tioté Booked
  • 14 Remy
  • 15 Gosling (Ameobi - 69' )
  • 11 Gouffran (Armstrong - 89' )

Substitutes

  • 13 Yanga-Mbiwa
  • 19 Haidara
  • 21 Elliot
  • 23 Ameobi
  • 25 Obertan
  • 27 Taylor
  • 43 Armstrong
Ref: Neil Swarbrick
Att: 60,023

Match Stats

Shots

20 8

On target

8 3

Corners

14 0

Fouls

9 8

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Arsenal 3, Newcastle United 0.

90:00 +3:02 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Arsenal 3, Newcastle United 0.

90:00 +2:24

Attempt missed. Paul Dummett (Newcastle United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Moussa Sissoko with a cross.

90:00 +0:50

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Cheick Tioté.

90:00 +0:48

Attempt blocked. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Yaya Sanogo.

88:10 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Newcastle United. Adam Armstrong replaces Yoan Gouffran.

87:39

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa.

85:58

Foul by Mathieu Flamini (Arsenal).

85:58

Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

85:20

Attempt missed. Tomas Rosicky (Arsenal) left footed shot from the left side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Lukas Podolski with a through ball.

84:24

Offside, Arsenal. Tomas Rosicky tries a through ball, but Yaya Sanogo is caught offside.

83:43 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Newcastle United. Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa replaces Mathieu Debuchy.

83:38 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Yaya Sanogo replaces Olivier Giroud.

80:38

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Fabricio Coloccini.

79:53

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Cheick Tioté.

78:59

Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

78:59

Foul by Paul Dummett (Newcastle United).

78:07

Attempt missed. Mathieu Debuchy (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Vurnon Anita.

74:39 Booking

Booking Bacary Sagna (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card.

74:26

Foul by Bacary Sagna (Arsenal).

74:26

Paul Dummett (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

73:23 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Tomas Rosicky replaces Aaron Ramsey.

73:10 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Arsenal. Mathieu Flamini replaces Mesut Özil.

72:30

Foul by Mikel Arteta (Arsenal).

72:30

Yoan Gouffran (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the right wing.

70:40

Offside, Arsenal. Aaron Ramsey tries a through ball, but Olivier Giroud is caught offside.

70:38

Attempt missed. Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

70:09

Attempt saved. Yoan Gouffran (Newcastle United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Moussa Sissoko.

69:27

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

69:27

Fabricio Coloccini (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

69:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Newcastle United. Shola Ameobi replaces Dan Gosling.

68:25

Attempt missed. Lukas Podolski (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

65:45 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Arsenal 3, Newcastle United 0. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) header from the left side of the six yard box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Mesut Özil with a cross.

64:58

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

64:58

Foul by Yoan Gouffran (Newcastle United).

63:58

Foul by Mesut Özil (Arsenal).

63:58

Vurnon Anita (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

63:24

Foul by Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal).

63:24

Cheick Tioté (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

59:15

Offside, Arsenal. Aaron Ramsey tries a through ball, but Mesut Özil is caught offside.

57:14

Attempt saved. Yoan Gouffran (Newcastle United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Loïc Remy with a through ball.

54:57

Attempt missed. Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left misses to the right following a corner.

54:55

Attempt missed. Bacary Sagna (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Santiago Cazorla with a cross following a corner.

54:26

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Yoan Gouffran.

52:52

Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

52:52

Foul by Cheick Tioté (Newcastle United).

52:12

Attempt missed. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) right footed shot from the left side of the box is too high following a corner.

51:43

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Paul Dummett.

50:52

Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the left wing.

50:52

Foul by Cheick Tioté (Newcastle United).

50:15

Per Mertesacker (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

50:15

Foul by Loïc Remy (Newcastle United).

47:37

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Michael Williamson.

45:00

Second Half begins Arsenal 2, Newcastle United 0.

45:00 +2:48 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Arsenal 2, Newcastle United 0.

45:00 +2:25 Booking

Booking Cheick Tioté (Newcastle United) is shown the yellow card.

45:00 +1:56

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Tim Krul.

45:00 +1:53

Attempt saved. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

41:02 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Arsenal 2, Newcastle United 0. Mesut Özil (Arsenal) right footed shot from the left side of the six yard box to the bottom left corner.

41:01

Attempt saved. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

40:59

Attempt saved. Olivier Giroud (Arsenal) left footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Mikel Arteta with a through ball.

38:45

Attempt missed. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left.

38:11

Attempt missed. Lukas Podolski (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Santiago Cazorla with a cross following a corner.

37:40

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Vurnon Anita.

36:47

Attempt missed. Mathieu Debuchy (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Vurnon Anita.

33:51 Booking

Booking Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card.

32:06

Attempt saved. Cheick Tioté (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Vurnon Anita.

30:57

Foul by Bacary Sagna (Arsenal).

30:57

Yoan Gouffran (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

30:02

Mikel Arteta (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

30:02

Foul by Yoan Gouffran (Newcastle United).

29:30

Attempt blocked. Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

29:23

Attempt saved. Lukas Podolski (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Santiago Cazorla with a cross.

28:57

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Mathieu Debuchy.

28:44

Attempt blocked. Bacary Sagna (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Mesut Özil with a cross.

28:22

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Dan Gosling.

27:45

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Tim Krul.

27:42

Attempt saved. Lukas Podolski (Arsenal) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Aaron Ramsey with a through ball.

26:35

Hand ball by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

25:40 Booking

Booking Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for excessive celebration.

25:09 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Arsenal 1, Newcastle United 0. Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal) right footed shot from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Santiago Cazorla following a set piece situation.

24:25 Booking

Booking Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

24:08

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

24:08

Foul by Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle United).

22:06

Offside, Newcastle United. Dan Gosling tries a through ball, but Moussa Sissoko is caught offside.

20:56

Offside, Arsenal. Bacary Sagna tries a through ball, but Olivier Giroud is caught offside.

19:45

Attempt missed. Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle United) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Paul Dummett.

16:52

Attempt missed. Mesut Özil (Arsenal) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the right following a corner.

16:14

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Fabricio Coloccini.

14:53

Attempt blocked. Vurnon Anita (Newcastle United) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Moussa Sissoko.

5:45

Foul by Olivier Giroud (Arsenal).

5:45

Fabricio Coloccini (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

5:17

Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Moussa Sissoko.

4:30

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

4:30

Foul by Loïc Remy (Newcastle United).

3:31

Offside, Newcastle United. Fabricio Coloccini tries a through ball, but Loïc Remy is caught offside.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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