Arsenal 3-0 Wigan Athletic
Van Persie 21, 58, 85
Arsenal strolled to victory against EPL strugglers Wigan with Dutch striker Robin Van Persie grabbing his first-ever hat-trick in England.
The Gunners could have won by many more but they found Latics keeper Ali Al-Habsi in outstanding form, making a string of saves in a virtuoso display of shot-stopping in a one-sided first-half.
And Robin Van Persie blazed a second-half penalty over the bar as Arsenal eased up in the second half.
The athletic Al-Habsi saved Samir Nasri’s left-foot shot and Van Persie’s right-foot shot and Gary Caldwell superbly blocked a Cesc Fabregas effort before Arsenal went ahead on 21 minutes when Van Persie swept home Alexander Song’s pass from 15 yards.
Al-Habsi made saves from Fabregas, Nasri and Van Persie again before half-time, while Theo Walcott opted to pass rather than take the keeper on when he was clean through and the chance went begging.
The Gunners went two-up on 58 minutes when Van Persie volleyed home Fabregas’s wonderful pass from 15 yards.
Wigan’s Gary Caldwell was sent-off for a penalty-box foul on Fabregas but Van Persie skied the spot-kick and had to wait for his hat-trick until 85 minutes, when Walcott set him up for a close-range right-footed finish.
Tags: Arsenal, Wigan, Robin Van Persie, Theo Walcott, Gunners