LONDON: The international break did not dull Arsenal’s edge as the Premier League leaders proved in a straightforward 4-1 home win over Norwich.
Jack Wilshere’s first home league goal put them ahead at half-time as he scored his second in successive games, having gone almost three years without scoring in the league.
Norwich threatened on a couple of occasions before Mesut Ozil struck his own first Premier goal for Arsenal just before the hour as he headed home Olivier Giroud’s cross.
Jonny Howson’s driven finish from the edge of the area after a poor piece of defending from Per Mertesacker gave the Canaries hope.
But any ideas of an unlikely comeback were ended as substitute Aaron Ramsey thumped his ninth goal of the season before Ozil added his second late on.
A late goal from Dejan Lovren gave high-flying Southampton a 1-1 draw at Manchester United.
Robin Van Persie gave David Moyes’s side the lead with his first goal in four games before both he and Wayne Rooney saw efforts hit the bar.
But the hosts could not kill off the game and were made to pay as Lovren, who scored the winner at Anfield last month, was on hand to tap in from a corner.
Liverpool were held 2-2 draw by 10-man Newcastle at St James’ Park.
Yohan Cabaye fired the Magpies ahead with a superb long-range effort before Steven Gerrard struck his 100th Premier League goal from a penalty spot to level before half-time.
Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa was sent off for pulling back Luis Suarez for the penalty but young defender Paul Dummett, introduced to shore up the Newcastle back line, volleyed home a Cabaye free-kick 11 minutes in to the second half and put the hosts back in front.
Daniel Sturridge again drew Liverpool level in the 72nd minute with a close-range diving header but Brendan Rodgers had to settle for a point as Newcastle held firm.
Samuel Eto’o opened his Chelsea account as Jose Mourinho’s side came from behind to beat Cardiff at Stamford Bridge to win 4-1.
Jordan Mutch had given Cardiff a shock lead on his first Premier League start for the Bluebirds after poor defending from the home side.
David Luiz decided against collecting a pass from Ramires as he looked to leave it for goalkeeper Petr Cech but Mutch nipped in and was left to coolly put the visitors ahead.
It was a mistake from his Cardiff goalkeeper David Marshall that allowed Eden Hazard to equalise for Chelsea.
Marshall looked to bounce the ball and Eto’o nicked it away from him, with Hazard taking full advantage of the Cameroon international’s ingenuity.
Eto’o then grabbed his first goal for Chelsea after 66 minutes as he beat two defenders before firing a shot past Marshall.
Mourinho was sent off after leaving his technical area to vent his upset at a decision, but that did not stop Oscar and Hazard adding the gloss to the scoreline.
Gus Poyet’s first game as Sunderland manager ended in a heavy defeat as they slipped to a 4-0 loss at Swansea, the Black Cats remaining anchored to the foot of the table.
The visitors were in the game until two goals in the space of a minute gave Michael Laudrup’s side the win.
A Phil Bardsley own goal was followed rapidly by a fantastic strike from Jonathan De Guzman.
The third Swansea goal came courtesy of a Wilfried Bony penalty after Craig Gardner had bundled Leon Britton over inside the box, with Chico Flores adding the fourth with 10 minutes remaining.
Everton had substitute Steven Pienaar to thank for all three points at home to Hull as the midfielder grabbed the winning goal in their 2-1 success.
Kevin Mirallas struck early on to give the hosts the lead at Goodison Park. The Belgium international was picked out from a disputed short corner and his low well-struck effort was unseen by Hull goalkeeper Allan McGregor, going in off the post.
Things went from bad to worse for Steve Bruce’s side as striker Danny Graham was stretchered off shortly afterwards.
But it was his replacement Yannick Sagbo who levelled for the visitors as he swept home Sone Aluko’s cross from close range.
Hull had a lengthy spell of dominance, but Pienaar marked his return from injury as a second-half substitute by putting the Toffees back in front having been on the pitch for under 30 seconds.
Stoke continued to struggle in front of goal as they drew 0-0 at home to West Bromwich with Victor Anichebe close to a dramatic late winner for the visitors.