Arsenal have one foot in the semi-finals of the Europa League after a 4-1 win against CSKA Moscow at the Emirates on Thursday.
The Gunners produced a superb attacking display on the night, with Mesut Ozil outstanding throughout.
It took only nine minutes for the hosts to make the breakthrough, with Ozil finding Hector Bellerin who picked out Aaron Ramsey.
The in-form midfielder made no mistake, firing home from inside the box.
However, for all Arsenal’s slick forward play, they were once again highly suspect at the back, and just six minutes later the Russians drew level after some shocking defending.
Aleksandr Golovin was the scorer for CSKA, rattling home a delicious 25-yard free-kick won after a catalogue of errors by the Gunners lead to a clumsy foul from Laurent Koscielny.
Leicester City loanee Ahmed Musa, a constant thorn in the hosts’ side all evening, then missed a great chance to put his side ahead, scuffing a shot wide when through on Petr Cech’s goal.
The visitors, with an ageing back three (boasting a combined age of over 100), struggled to cope with the Gunners’ sharp attacking play and after Ozil was felled in the box, Alexandre Lacazette netted his second penalty in two games.
Just before the half-hour mark, Ramsey then took the tie away from CSKA by scoring an utterly sublime goal, with Ozil again the creator.
After some slick interplay, the ball found its way to Ozil, who floated a perfect pass in to Ramsey in the box.
The Welshman then produced the most exquisite of instinctive first-time flicks, which sailed over ‘keeper Igor Akinfeev and into the back of the net. Truly stunning.
STUNNING GOAL, ARSENAL!!! 👏
Mesut Özil with one of the best assists you are ever likely to see 😲
Aaron Ramsey with the insane acrobatic finish! pic.twitter.com/fRxGYc20J8
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) April 5, 2018
Before the break, Lacazette netted his second of the game, clinically dispatching a crisp shot after yet another pinpoint pass from Ozil.
No more goals would come in the second-half, although both sides had more chances to score, with only the post coming between Ramsey and his hat-trick.
The game would end in a 4-1 victory, thanks to a fluent attacking performance from the Gunners.
However, a more clinical opponent would have undoubtedly punished the hosts’ numerous defensive errors far more than CSKA managed to do on the night.