Arsenal thrash Wien in Europa

UEFA Europa League

Arsenal bagged an emphatic 4-1 victory over Rapid Wien to cement top spot in their UEFA Europa League group on Thursday evening.

The Gunners started with Runar Runarsson between the sticks, while Mikel Arteta re-called Pablo Mari, Eddie Nketiah and Alexandre Lacazette.

With spectators in the stands, Arsenal were given a positive start ten minutes in after a stupendous drive from Lacazette that left Richard Strebinger with no chance.

The lead was doubled when Mari headed in off the far post 18 minutes in after meeting an in-swinging corner-kick from Reiss Nelson.

Arsenal were on the prowl again nine minutes later as Lacazette missed out on a first-half brace after clattering a curling strike from the edge of the area onto the post.

The Gunners rounded off a dominant half with a third goal on 44 minutes when Nketiah needed two bites of the cherry to nod in a well-orchestrated team move.

A double change from the Green-Whites at the restart saw Thorsten Schick replace Maximilian Ullmann while Maximilian Hofmann made way for Mateo Barac.

The visitors pulled a goal back straight after halftime through Koya Kitagawa, who volleyed in a rebound off successive goal-line clearances from the hosts following a shot from Kelvin Arase.

Lacazette still closed in on a brace moments later with a smart attempt from the centre of the area, but Strebinger stretched across to parry before Nicolas Pepe skewed a loose ball wide with a gaping goal.

Arsenal made it four midway in the second half when Emile Smith Rowe tapped in a low cross from Ainsley Maitland-Niles following a flowing move through the middle.

The Gunners had chances for more goals towards full-time through Dani Ceballos, Willian and Folarin Balogun, but 4-1 was how the encounter finished at the Emirates Stadium.

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