The Frenchman swept in Bukayo Saka’s ball for his third goal in three games to earn the Gunners their first back-to-back league wins since the start of the season. Striker Alexandre Lacazette scored 21 seconds after coming on as a second-half substitute to give Arsenal a narrow win at Brighton.
However, their display lacked the fizz that saw them defeat Chelsea 3-1 on Saturday. They were particularly sluggish in the first half when they only managed one effort on goal.
The tempo and urgency was turned up a couple of notches after the break, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Gabriel Martinelli going close before Lacazette struck.
Brighton boss Graham Potter left forwards Neal Maupay and Danny Welbeck on the bench – two of six changes made to the starting XI. His side once again looked comfortable and composed on the ball but it was the same old story in the attack.
The closest the home side came to scoring was when Alireza Jahanbakhsh forced a sharp save from Bernd Leno at his near post. Arsenal climbs up to 13th and now have 20 points, while Brighton remains two points above the drop zone in 17th.
The Scotland full-back was adamant that the emphatic victory over the Blues was partly due to the side starting on the front foot, so it came as a slight surprise that the Gunners retreated into their shells during the first half against Brighton.
Aubameyang replaced Lacazette in the starting XI, but he was left chasing scraps as his team-mates failed to provide him with adequate service. Thankfully for the club’s fans, it was a match of two halves – their team looked rejuvenated after the break.
Aubameyang went close soon after the restart when he attempted to turn home Saka’s cross but was thwarted by the knee of Robert Sanchez. His side then broke through.
Saka, exceptional on the flanks, this time set up Lacazette, who barely had time to get his studs dirty as he fired his shot past the Seagulls keeper. The display was in stark contrast with that shown against Chelsea, but the result is the same and will give Arsenal and their fans heart as they head into 2021.
Source – BBC News