Theo Walcott, Danny Welbeck star as Arsenal rout Southampton

Danny Welbeck celebrates a stunning return for the Gunners

Danny Welbeck celebrates a stunning return for the Gunners

Arsene Wenger hailed Arsenal's dominant display against Southampton and defended the decision to make nine changes at St Mary's.

Arsenal's Jeff Reine Adelaide had an early shot blocked before Lucas Perez, found in plenty of space on the left by Welbeck's pass, hit his shot beyond the far post.

Welbeck then added a second seven minutes later as he latched onto Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's pinpoint pass over the defence.

Elsewhere, there's a welcome start for Danny Welbeck, his first since May as he has gradually continued his recovery from a serious knee injury, and he will be supported by Theo Walcott and Lucas Perez on the flanks.

WHILE Arsenal's north London rivals Spurs scraped past bottom division Wycombe Wanderers today (Saturday), the Gunners were as good as through to the next round of the FA Cup by half time against Premier League opposition.

Southampton: Lewis, McQueen, Gardos, Stephens, Martina, Reed, Clasie, Hojbjerg, Sims, Isgrove (Tadic 64), Long (Redmond 64).

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Arsenal dominated possession right from the off, with Walcott and Hector Bellerin combining well down the right, but it was an incisive move through the middle that saw the Gunners break the deadlock. Arsenal, it has to be said, were perhaps fortunate that their trip to Southampton, often a hazardous assignment for the club, was made easier by the home team resting some of their more established first-teamers.

If you can't watch live on TV, check Southampton FC Twitter and Arsenal FC Twitter updates on this page.

Just over five minutes on from his first and Welbeck doubled his, and Arsenal's, tally for the afternoon as he brought down a long ball from Chamberlain and slid it past Lewis into the bottom corner. According to them, 2-2 draw for Southampton vs Arsenal prediction. "It's now down to me to use them at the right moment when they are in good form and in the right way".

Goals: Welbeck (15, 22), Walcott (36, 69, 84). Gibbs again finding Sanchez, who took two players out of the game by squaring the ball for Walcott, who once again only needed one touch to finish. Another lovely move if finished off by Theo Walcott, running onto Sanchez's cut back and complete his hat-trick.

"He worked very hard and went through some disappointing moments".

Theo Walcott scored his fifth Arsenal hat-trick and was the first Arsenal player since Nicklas Bendtner against Leyton Orient in March 2011 to score an FA Cup hat-trick.

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