The Gunners really never needed to get out of second gear in this match. First half goals from Kieran Gibbs and the truly excellent Theo Walcott, and a brilliant free kick from 25 or 30 yards out by Mikel Arteta in extra time sealed Arsenal's comprehensive victory over a Villa side that showed little offensive threat (aside from one or two ineffectual counterattacks in the first half).
The victory was Arsenal's seventh on the trot in the Premier League, further securing the Gunner's hold on third place. They sit three points ahead of Tottenham, who drew away to Chelsea today. That was an ideal result for the Gunners, who now hold an 8 point advantage over Chelsea. Making matters even better, Liverpool lost at home to Wigan, and now trail the Gunners in the standings by 16 points. To put that point differential in context, Arsenal only trail league leaders Man U by 12 points (although Man U have a game in hand).