Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger praised Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s all-round display after his brace in the 2-0 victory over Crystal Palace.
The England international broke the deadlock in the 47th minute at the Emirates Stadium with a fine lofted effort after collecting Santi Cazorla’s expertly clipped pass.
Oxlade-Chamberlain made sure of the points by finishing a superb flowing move with a low driven strike under Palace goalkeeper Julian Speroni on 73 minutes.
The feat was even more impressive considering it was his first league start since suffering a serious knee injury against Aston Villa on the opening day of the season.
Wenger deployed the 20-year-old in a central midfield role, and believes Oxlade-Chamberlain can have a future in that position despite largely being recognised as a winger.
“I always believed that he could play wide and central, he has proven me right today by scoring the goals,” the Frenchman explained.
“But also the overall quality of his performance. It took him a while to get back because he was injured against Villa.”
The win saw Arsenal move back to the top of the Premier League, and Oxlade-Chamberlain was thrilled to contribute.
He told Sky Sports: “It was nice to get the win today, it is always an amazing feeling to score a goal. I’ve been off the pitch for a while so it was nice to come back and help the team.
“It was a tough game but we knew that in the second half if we kept the tempo up we would get more opportunities and thankfully we did.”