Arsenal beats Palace 4-1 to extend Premier League lead

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Arsenal's Granit Xhaka celebrates their victory at the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Crystal Palace at Emirates stadium in London, Sunday, March 19, 2023. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

LONDON – Bukayo Saka struck twice as Arsenal moved a step closer to the Premier League title by beating Crystal Palace 4-1 on Sunday.

The Gunners are eight points clear of current champions Manchester City, having played a game more.

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Palace, who fired manager Patrick Vieira this week, saw its relegation concerns deepen after stretching its winless run to 13 games in all competitions.

Saka scored twice and set up the opener for Gabriel Martinelli, becoming the first Premier League player this season to reach double figures for both goals and assists.

Granit Xhaka was also on the score sheet.

Martinelli opened the scoring the 28th minute after turning in Saka's cross.

Saka added a second in the 43rd after collecting a pass from Ben White and finishing low past Palace goalkeeper Joe Whitworth.

Saka then saw an effort cleared off the line as Arsenal started the second half in the same dominant manner as it ended the first.

Xhaka made it 3-0 in the 55th after exchanging passes with Leandro Trossard and finishing from close range.

Schlupp pulled one back for Palace in the 63rd, but any thoughts of an unlikely comeback were ended when Saka struck again in the 74th.

Palace is three points above the relegation zone, but fellow strugglers Bournemouth, West Ham, Leicester, Nottingham Forest and Leeds have games in hand.


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