Alexis Sanchez struck twice as Arsenal returned to winning ways with a contentious and hard-fought 2-0 Premier League win over Hull City on Saturday.
The Gunners had lost their last two games coming into this contest against the relegation-threatened Tigers and had drifted out of the title race as a result.
They were by no means back to their best, but with a Champions League tie at Bayern Munich to come on Wednesday, manager Arsene Wenger will be pleased to have chalked up a timely victory.
Sanchez opened the scoring on 34 minutes with a goal that was allowed to stand despite the ball going in off his right hand.
He confirmed the three points with an injury-time penalty – his 17th goal of the campaign – after Sam Clucas had been sent off for clearing Lucas Perez’s strike off the line with his arm.
Hull threatened on occasion, but failed to get a positive result to lift them out of the bottom three, while Arsenal stay in the top four and provisionally close to within nine points of leaders Chelsea.
Some Arsenal fans decided to stay away in protest at what they deem as another failing Arsenal title bid.
But one man taking his seat in the stands at the Emirates Stadium was the under-fire Wenger, who served the last game of his four-match touchline ban.
His side seemed nervy at the back in the opening exchanges and Liverpool loanee Lazar Markovic broke into their box all too easily, but Oumar Niasse was unable to make contact with the Serbian’s cross.
Niasse tested Petr Cech moments later as he got onto the end of Kamil Grosicki’s smart cross to head towards goal, forcing the Arsenal goalkeeper to tip his effort behind.
The hosts then passed up two glorious opportunities to take the lead, with Hector Bellerin lashing wide when well-placed and Sanchez pulling his own effort wide of the mark from the centre of goal.