Arsenal stuns City at the Etihad

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Manchester, England ( - Arsenal defied the odds to collect all three points at the Etihad on Sunday thanks to a 2-0 defeat of Manchester City.

The Gunners entered the contest in poor form in recent road matches against the top teams in the Premier League, a record highlighted by the club's 6-3 defeat to City in the corresponding fixture last season.

But Arsenal exorcised those demons Sunday with a comprehensive victory to keep itself in the hunt for Champions League football next season.

The breakthrough came in the 24th minute after Vincent Kompany blocked Nacho Monreal's run into the box, resulting in a penalty that Santi Cazorla converted with great aplomb.

City emerged from the halftime interval with great endeavor but failed find the back of the net. And to make matters worse for the Citizens, Arsenal's lead was doubled in the 66th minute when Olivier Giroud capitalized on some slack defending to nod a free kick past Joe Hart for his sixth league goal of the campaign.

It proved to be the nail in City's coffin as Manuel Pellegrini's men drop their third league match of the season to slip five points back of first-place Chelsea.

Arsenal, meanwhile, climbs back into fifth place by improving to 39 points, one point adrift of Manchester United in the final Champions League position.

At Upton Park in Sunday's earlier fixture, a second-half push helped West Ham United collect a 3-0 victory over Hull City.

The hosts were held scoreless until the 49th minute when Andy Carroll broke the deadlock turning in a rebound from close range, and Morgan Amalfitano and Stewart Downing scored in quick succession to put the win beyond any doubt.

West Ham climbs to 36 points to remain entrenched in the hunt for a European spot next season, while Hull City stays in the relegation zone with just 19 points.