Arsenal returned to winning ways but had Mesut Ozil to thank for scoring a wonderful winner on an otherwise average afternoon for the Gunners as they toiled against out of form Newcastle.

Having taken just two points from their last three outings, Arsene Wenger could not have wished for a better game to pick up a first Premier League win of the month.

But the performance in a tight 1-0 win over the Magpies was met with incredulity from pockets of the home fans, with the likes of Alexis Sanchez and the recalled Alexandre Lacazette struggling to make an impact once again.

What they said

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger: “I’m pleased he [Mesut Ozil] took the gamble to finish and I’m happy as well that he scored a very important goal.”Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez: “We are a team that came from the Championship and where we are now could be expected. We must stay calm.”

Tweet of the Match

Star man – Mesut Ozil

Newcastle put in something of a shift for manager Rafael Benitez but had nothing to show for it, while many of Arsenal’s big names were off-form yet again. Therefore Ozil, if only for his match-winning effort, takes the man-of-the-match plaudits for his side.

Moment of the Match

Ozil’s goal not only settled the match in Arsenal’s favour but was an effort worthy of winning any football match. 

The Germany international controlled his volley to perfection where a lesser player would have simply leathered the ball as hard as they could. 

Ozil may be out of contract in the summer and scoring goals like this will show Arsenal fans just what they could be missing if the club fail to keep him.

Data Point

Arsenal have now won their last 10 Premier League meetings with Newcastle.

Match Ratings

Arsenal: Petr Cech 7 (out of 10), Hector Bellerin 6, Laurent Koscielny 6, Nacho Monreal 7, Ainsley Maitland-Niles 7, Granit Xhaka 6, Jack Wilshere 7, Alex Iwobi 5, Mesut Ozil 7, Alexis Sanchez 5, Alexandre Lacazette 5. Substitutes: Danny Welbeck (for Iwobi, 73) 5, Olivier Giroud (for Lacazette, 73) 6, Francis Coquelin (for Sanchez, 89) 5.Newcastle: Rob Elliot 7, DeAndre Yedlin 6, Jamaal Lascelles 7, Florian Lejeune 6, Javier Manquillo 7, Ayoze Perez 5, Isaac Hayden 6, Mikel Merino 6, Christian Atsu 6, Jacob Murphy 6, Joselu 6. Substitutes: Matt Ritchie (for Atsu, 54) 6, Mohamed Diame (for Merino, 80) 5.

Who’s up next?

Theo Walcott scored Arsenal's second goal in a 3-0 win when West Ham last visited the EmiratesTheo Walcott scored Arsenal’s second goal in a 3-0 win when West Ham last visited the Emirates (John Walton/EMPICS Sport )

Arsenal v West Ham (Carabao Cup, December 19)

West Ham v Newcastle (Premier League, December 23)