Made a fine save with his legs to deny van Persie seconds after the break but he was easily beaten by Andre Santos, his positioning was highly questionable for Walcott's goal and he might not want to see too many replays of Van Persie's third, either.
Failed to track some of Santos' second-half runs and got caught out of position far too often.
Won his share of headers but far too flat-footed on the deck and got caught out by the pace and precision of Arsenal's attacks.
Created havoc as an auxiliary winger and should have got a better reward when he was scythed down by Szczesny. Defensively, he made some important challenges but he was also guilty of being too rash on occasion and struggled to deal with Walcott's pace and timing.
Inevitably scored with a bundled header but slipped horribly to allow Van Persie in for the fourth on an afternoon when he could do little to prevent the Chelsea defence crumbling.
All-action display by the midfielder, who has recovered his best form following his early season dip. Scored the opener with a trademark late run and cool finish and created the second for Terry with a flighted corner.
Granted the freedom of Stamford Bridge by the hapless Arsenal defence and made them pay with a fine performance full of guile and defence-splitting passes. Created the first for Lampard and scored Chelsea's third with a sensational long-range finish.
J. Obi Mikel
Struggled to deal with the red-and-white tides in the second half and did not provide as much protection for the defence as might have been expected.
A ceaseless ball of blue energy but eventually ran out of puff on his return from a knee injury and subbed after 71 minutes.
His best chance came in the opening seconds when he could not quite see off Koscielny but he offered plenty to his team with his movement, pace and workrate.
Not sharp enough in the box but outstanding outside of it as his pace and movement made Santos' life a misery in the first half. Withdrawn after an hour.
How he did not see red for his two-footed scythe of Cole is almost beyond comprehension. Could not be faulted for the opening two goals but was a little flat-footed for Mata's third and did not always command his box late on.
A mixture of the good and the very bad. Will not want to watch too many replays of either Lampard's or Terry's goals, when he was guilty of failing to pick up both players. Made some fine interceptions but these two were not the errors that a reliable centre-back would make.
All over the place in his makeshift right-back role. He did not get tight enough on Chelsea's attackers and left far too many gaping holes on his flank.
It may not have been saying much but he was comfortably the best of Arsenal's defenders. Made a string of fine interceptions and tackles to bail his colleagues out of trouble. Immense at times.
Embarrassingly off the pace in the first half but settled down after taking his goal brilliantly. Nevertheless, he will not want to watch the lowlights of the first half, when he could not cope with the pace and movement of Sturridge and was easily outwitted by Mata in the build-up to the opening goal. Did not look fit and does not look quick enough but he certainly knows the way to goal - and how to celebrate.
Produced a brilliant surprise ball to put Gervinho through to tee up Van Persie for the equaliser and was at the heart of Arsenal's much-improved second-half display with a series of well-timed runs into the box.
R. van Persie
His annus mirabilis continued with a brilliant hat-trick, this time a simple tap-in, brilliant, nonchalantly taken second and a thumping third, which was the Dutchman's 10th league goal of the season and his 28th in his last 27 league games.
Guilty of missing a sitter early on but his mopvement and trickery caused Chelsea problems, particularly in the second half, and he showed great awareness by teeing up Van Persie for the equaliser and Santos for the second goal.
Brilliantly won his enthralling individual battle with Cole after producing a menacing display on the right flank. Created excellent chances for Gervinho and Van Persie early on with fine crosses and scored the fourth with a thumping finish. Surprisingly subbed with 12 minutes left.
- 46 J. Blackman
- 4 David Luiz
- 34 R. Bertrand
Struggled to make an impact in the crazy last half-hour and gave the ball away for van Persie's winner.
- 6 Oriol Romeu
Unable to make much of an impact as a late sub.
Looked to have made a foul in the build-up to Mata's equaliser but his power and strength brought a new dimension to Chelsea late on.