Kai Havertz’s two goals helped Arsenal defeat Chelsea 5-0 at the Emirates Stadium, giving them a commanding three-point lead in the Premier League. Mikel Arteta praised Havertz’s “unbelievable” performance.

The 24-year-old put on an incredible performance against his former team as the leaders inflicted further misery on visiting manager Mauricio Pochettino, who watched his ninth-place team suffer its worst-ever league defeat against Arsenal. Pochettino struggled in his early appearances after leaving Stamford Bridge for north London in the summer.

As part of an eighteen-minute burst in the second half, Havertz scored twice, helping Arteta’s team win for the second time in four days and continue their comeback from earlier defeats by Bayern Munich and Aston Villa.

The Arsenal onslaught began after only four minutes, Declan Rice sliding the ball into a channel on the left of the penalty area from where Leandro Trossard took over, dinking past defender Alfie Gilchrist, on his first Premier League start, and thudding it through the legs of Djordje Petrovic.

Thereafter Chelsea competed gamely, going close to equalising when Axel Disasi just failed to reach a flick-on from a corner and again when Nicolas Jackson’s effort was deflected onto the post by Gabriel, but in the space of under 20 minutes after the interval they fell to pieces.The former Chelsea forward made it 4-0, his shot pinging in off the post with Petrovic rooted, before White provided the moment of the match with a cross-shot that sailed across the face of goal and in from Martin Odegaard’s pass.In spite of having played one more game than Liverpool and two more than Manchester City, Arteta’s team moved up to the top ahead of Sunday’s derby against Tottenham. “It was a big performance, collectively and individually,” Arteta said.

“We were playing a really good team that was playing really well, and I thought we were really good.”Following a humiliating defeat, Chelsea manager Pochettino—for whom Arteta acknowledged to have “all the sympathy in the world”—gave a pessimistic evaluation of his team’s chances of making it to Europe.

“Now it is difficult to see the future because after this game we feel disappointed,” he stated. “Talking about goals is challenging.