Arsenal have emerged victorious against Molde after the Norway based outfit shipped four goals to Arsenal after taking the lead in the first half. The visitors were difficult to break down for Arsenal in the first half and completely frustrated them. However, second-half onwards, it was one-way traffic from Arteta & Co.
Arsenal conceded early on in the first half from a Martin Ellingsen strike in the 22nd minute earning the visitors a lead. Ellingsen struck a wonder goal from 25 yards outside and beat Leno at the bottom far corner.
The Gunners managed to draw level just before the referee blew the half time whistle as they caught Molde out on a quick counter-attack. Willock squared it across the box, and it went in off a Molde defender, Haagen. Arteta wouldn’t have been impressed with his side’s performance in the first half, but the equaliser would have made the dressing room talk a bit calmer.
Another own goal followed by a goal from Pepe gave Arsenal ultimate control of the tie. The goal from Willock in the dying moments was the icing on top. Here’s how Arsenal rated in their 4-1 victory against Molde –
GK: Bernd Leno – 7/10
After conceding a goal in the first half, the goalie had a relatively comfortable night where he was largely untroubled.
RB: Ainsley Maitland-Niles – 7/10
A good shift put in by the makeshift full-back who could have done slightly better with his final balls. Maitland-Niles was replaced by Cedric around the hour mark in the second half.
CB: Shkodran Mustafi – 7/10
A tidy performance in defence from Mustafi. He seemed alert and was well aware of his partner, Luiz’s whereabouts.
CB: David Luiz – 8/10
The defender stood tall and was strong in defence and even delivered an exceptional long ball in the second half. An impressive performance from Luiz. However, he picked up a yellow card in the second half.
LB: Sead Kolasinac – 7/10
A rather bleak evening for the full-back who missed a sitter from point black range.
RW: Willian – 7/10
An industrious performance from the former Chelsea winger. The Brazilian could have done better with his deliveries from corners.
CM: Dani Ceballos – 9/10
The Spaniard was the focal point of several Arsenal attacks. Ceballos sprayed the ball around the field with ease and showed great zeal and enthusiasm. Zidane would have had his eyes hooked, looking at this performance from Ceballos.
CM: Granit Xhaka – 8/10
Xhaka was vital in midfield for Arteta. He was the captain of the side for the evening. The Swiss international was replaced in the 80th minute of the match by Tierney.
LW: Nicolas Pepe – 8/10
A goal and an assist to his credit against Molde. Pepe has now scored 2 goals in three match days.
FW: Joe Willock – 8/10
Earned himself a goal in the dying moments of the game. He toiled extremely hard and was hard done by the linesman on a couple of occasions.
FW: Eddie Nketiah – 7/10
Nketiah’s decision making in the final third looked a bit wayward as he ended up wasting a good opportunity on a couple of occasions. Apart from that, he had a rather decent evening.
RB: Cedric – 7/10
Cedric had a pleasant thirty-odd minutes at the Emirates Stadium and even created two goal-scoring chances.
RW: Saka – 7/10
The substitute assisted arsenal’s third goal of the night. However, a lazy challenge while defending in his own half earned him a yellow card.
CM: Elneny – 6/10
The Egyptian did not have much involvement with the play post coming on.
LB: Tierney – 6/10
Did not have much involvement with play post coming on.