|Giroud and Ozil were on the score-sheet as Arsenal reached the semi-finals|
One of the most pleasing aspects of our win was the performance of Mesut Ozil. He's been widely criticised recently and was even jeered off the pitch when he played for Germany in the week. However what he did on Saturday was a perfect response to his critics and to anyone who doubted him. He got the ball rolling with the first goal just seven minutes in. Cazorla led a break away and then fed the German who rolled the ball home. It was a precise finish from a man who now looked to have a new burst of life. It was the German play-makers first goal for exactly three months where he scored against the same opponents. He meanwhile assisted the fourth goal with a brilliant bit of awareness to pick out Giroud after a typical counter attacking move.
Moving onto Giroud it was good to see him bounce back too. He was brilliant against Sunderland but then truly awful against Stoke. Yaya Sanogo started yesterday and didn't do himself any harm but Giroud offered us something different. I don't know why, but he always seems to play better at home and make a lot more runs. His first goal was a brilliant piece of work down the right by Sagna and Giroud was then left with a tap in, meanwhile he also got himself into a good position to finish the game off for his second. It was a very good performance and should bring him confidence going into the game against Bayern.
The decision to play Arteta and Flamini together caused a bit of a stir because so far this season they've been incapable of playing beside each other. I don't know whether it was because he was against his old club but Arteta played one of his best 90 minutes all season. It was great to see him in his more preferred position, driving forward from midfield rather than holding back. He was busy in and around the penalty area and deserved his goal. However he was forced to take his penalty twice after Giroud was encroaching for the first one. Both were taken superbly though. Thomas Vermaelen meanwhile put in a solid performance in place of the injured Koscielny and shows the good squad depth we have.
Next up of course if Bayern Munich in the week. Last year's performance in Germany gives me the confidence that we can go there and achieve a result. Man City have already done so in this years Champions League so why can't we? It'll be a very tough game and one where we'll have to stop Bayern scoring, but score three times ourselves if we're to reach the quarter-finals.
The teams line-ups:
Arsenal: Fabianski, Sagna, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Gibbs(88), Flamini, Arteta, Oxlade-Chamberlain(78), Ozil, Cazorla, Sanogo(61).
Subs: Viviano, Jenkinson(88), Rosicky(78), Miyaichi, Gnabry, Podolski, Giroud(61).
Everton: Joel, Coleman, Stones, Distin, Baines, McCarthy, Barry, Mirallas(76), Barkley(84), Pienaar(76), Lukaku.
Subs: Howard, Hibbert, Browning, Osman(76), McGeady(76), Deulofeu(84), Naismith.
My man of the match: Mesut Ozil.
Referee: Mark Clattenburg.