Gervinho was the inspiration as Arsenal strolled to a comfortable 4-1 win over struggling Reading at the Emirates Stadium.
The Ivorian scored the opener and set up two more as the Gunners gave their hopes of a top-four place a real boost.
The defeat for Reading meanwhile was a sixth on the spin and leaves new boss Nigel Adkins with a mountain to climb if he is to lift his side out of trouble.
The Gunners were on top from the outset and made the perfect start on 11 minutes, Gervinho tapping home Santi Cazorla's cross-shot from close range to finish a move he had started on the right wing.
Arsenal thought they had won a penalty when onrushing Reading goalkeeper Stuart Taylor clattered Olivier Giroud in the area on 18 minutes, only for referee Chris Foy to wave play on.
Arsene Wenger's men were utterly dominant in the first 45 but could not find a second, the best chance coming when Cazorla drilled just wide of the left-hand post from inside the area.
Adkins will have been reliev...