A brace from Alexis Sanchez helped Arsenal secure a win for the first time this month as a battling Bournemouth nearly pushed them to the limit.
The Gunners, with the likes of Mathieu Debuchy, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mohamed Elneny and Granit Xhaka back in the starting lien-up, approached the opening minutes of the clash with much enthusiasm as the away side were kept under pressure.
Seemingly goal-bound efforts from Mesut Ozil and Mohamed Elneny were blocked by Nathan Ake but the opening goal was very much gifted to Arsenal a few moments later despite’s Bournemouth’s resistance.
A poor back pass from Steve Cook handed Alexis Sanchez a one-on-one chance which the Chilean calmly tucked away to put the home side ahead.
Arsene Wenger’s men then looked to be in the mood to turn this into a really dominant first-half but the tide started turning when Mathieu Debuchy was forced off with a hamstring injury to be replaced by Gabriel at right-back.
Moments later, a loose ball in Arsenal’s area saw Nacho Monreal concede a controversial penalty-kick as he tangled with Calum Wilson who stepped up to coolly finish from 12-yards out and level the score.
Arsenal entered the second-half like a team with a point to prove and it only took eight minutes after the restart for them to reclaim the lead as a Monreal cross found an unmarked Walcott who headed home from close range.
Eddie Howe’s side were behind once again but they chose not to go down without a fight, carving out a couple of threatening chances which saw Petr Cech produce a magnificent save to deny former Gunner Benik Afobe on one occasion.
But Arsenal’s superiority in talent eventually saw them finish off the job as substitute Olivier Giroud teed up Alexis Sanchez who tapped home his second goal of the day and a much-need third for the home side.