Alexis Sanchez scored a 14-minute hat-trick in a frantic finale as Arsenal moved second in the Premier League with a 5-1 victory over struggling West Ham at London Stadium on Saturday.
With Manchester City having lost 3-1 at home to leaders Chelsea, Sanchez ensured Arsenal took their chance to move one point ahead of Pep Guardiola’s side in a match that exploded into life in the closing stages, highlighted by a six-minute spell in which four goals were scored.
Arsenal moved ahead when Chile international Sanchez capitalised on an error from Angelo Ogbonna to tee up Mesut Ozil for his eighth strike in all competitions this term – equalling the total he managed in the entire 2015-16 season.
West Ham initially showed signs of improvement after the restart, but Sanchez put the result beyond doubt with two brilliant goals as the match reached a thrilling climax.
Andy Carroll was on target in his first appearance since August when he reacted quickest after Dimitri Payet’s free-kick hit the crossbar, but Arsene Wenger’s side responded with two more efforts.
After Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain curled home from distance, Sanchez wrapped up his hat-trick and moved joint-top of the Premier League scoring charts by committing Darren Randolph to ground and sending a lovely dinked finish into the back of the net.
The result heaped pressure on Slaven Bilic, whose side suffered an early setback when they were forced into a change when James Collins appeared to sustain a muscular injury in the seventh minute.