Arsenal 3, Bournemouth 1
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger admits the club has work to do to tie Alexis Sanchez to a new contract after the livewire forward underlined his value with two goals to sink Bournemouth.
Theo Walcott scored the other, with Callum Wilson replying for the visitors with a penalty, as the Gunners ended a run of three draws and moved to within three points of Premier League leaders Chelsea.
Alexis, like fellow Arsenal star Mesut Ozil, has little more than 18 months left on his current contract, meaning Wenger could be forced to sell next summer if a new deal is not agreed.
“It is important. How important it is, I don’t know. We will not sort it tonight. We have some time in front of us,” said Wenger, who praised the Chilean’s burst of pace for his second strike.
“Even when he looks dead, he’s still alive and always finds the resources to do something special.”
Bournemouth, who remain 12th, gifted Arsenal the opener on 12 minutes when defender Steve Cook’s weak back-pass invited Alexis to intercept and round Adam Federici.
Wilson won and converted a penalty 11 minutes later but the recalled Walcott re-established the hosts’ lead with a close-range header shortly after half-time.
Alexis settled Arsenal nerves in stoppage time when he tapped in from substitute Olivier Giroud’s cut-back following a swift counter-attack.