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Aubameyang ends drought in Arsenal's 3-0 win over Newcastle

Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang finally ended his scoring drought in the Premier League with two second-half goals in 3-0 win against Newcastle on Monday as the Gunners try to claw their way out of midtable.

Aubameyang, who hadn’t scored in the league since Dec. 16, broke the deadlock in the 50th minute before Bukaya Saka added a second with style in the 61st. An unmarked Aubameyang got his second goal in the 77th.

It was a fifth consecutive clean sheet in all competitions for Arsenal and a fourth win in five league matches. But the Gunners only moved up a place to 10th with 27 points, as they try to turn around their season after a woeful start. Newcastle remained in 15th place, only seven points from the relegation zone.

Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates after scoring his side's opening goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Newcastle United at Emirates Stadium in London, England, Monday, Jan.18, 2021. (Catherine IvillPool via AP)

Aubameyang, who had just three league goals this season coming into the game, seemed like he would continue his poor run of form after missing a string of chances in the first half.

But a perfectly weighted long ball from midfielder Thomas Partey found the struggling forward on the left, leaving him one-on-one with defender Emil Krafth.

The Arsenal captain cut inside and struck the ball past goalkeeper Karl Darlow, beating him at the near post. Aubameyang did his trademark front flip in celebration.

Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, centre, celebrates with teammates after scoring his side's third goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Newcastle United at Emirates Stadium in London, England, Monday, Jan.18, 2021. (Adam DavyPool via AP)

Then, it was the time for Arsenal’s youngsters to shine. Emile Smith Rowe took the ball down the left before cutting in and setting up an unmarked Saka, who drifted in to near the penalty spot before finishing with a simple tap-in.

Aubameyang’s second came when Cedric Soares took the ball to the byline before looking up and finding his unmarked captain, who sidefooted home. A video review confirmed the ball was kept in play by Soares.

Aubameyang didn't have a chance to score a hat trick, as he was substituted two minutes later.

Arsenal players celebrate after Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, second left, scored his side's opening goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Newcastle United at Emirates Stadium in London, England, Monday, Jan.18, 2021. (Shaun BotterillPool via AP)

One of the few Newcastle counterattacks came in the 24th, when winger Miguel Almiron beat Partey’s sliding tackle to intercept the ball and break unmarked down the right. The Paraguayan cut in and exchanged passes with Andy Carroll before firing the ball over the bar.

The visitors made eight changes, with manager Steve Bruce fielding a more attacking lineup as Newcastle tries to steer clear of the relegation zone. But the Magpies are still missing one of their main attacking threats, winger Allan Saint-Maximin, who has been sidelined for the past seven weeks with a severe case of COVID-19. He only recently started training again.

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Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scores his side's opening goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Newcastle United at Emirates Stadium in London, England, Monday, Jan.18, 2021. (Catherine IvillPool via AP)