Football news - Martinelli stars as Arsenal thrash Standard Liege
Champions League, The Emirates - Arsenal 4 (Martinelli 13', 16', Willock 22', Ceballos 57') Standard Liege 0
Dani Ceballos of FC Arsenal celebrates after scoring his team's fourth goal with team mates during the UEFA Europa League group F match between Arsenal FC and Standard Liege at Emirates Stadium on October 3, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (
Arsenal took charge of Group F in the Europa League with a rampant display against Standard Liege at the Emirates Stadium.
The three points were effectively secured in the opening 22 minutes. The electric Gabriel Martinelli scored twice in quick succession and Joe Willock soon added a third, as Arsenal’s hungry young players blew their opponents away.
More good work from Martinelli led to Dani Ceballos scoring his first goal for Arsenal in the second half. Arsenal created chances for fun from their left side, with Kieran Tierney and Reiss Nelson slicing through the Standard Liege’s defence at will.
Although the emphatic display will be asterisked due to a soporific display from the opposition, it did draw attention to the talent in Arsenal’s ranks as they try to push on and re-establish themselves in the top four of the Premier League. Manager Unai Emery will have much to consider ahead of Bournemouth’s visit to the Emirates on Sunday.
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 03: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal FC celebrate after scoring 2nd goal during the UEFA Europa League group F match between Arsenal FC and Standard Liege at Emirates Stadium on October 3, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by S
Image credit: Getty Images
The kids are more than alright. Although tonight’s result was achieved against the meekest of opposition, Emery can be forgiven for getting excited about a clutch of the players that achieved it. Martinelli, Willock, Tierney and Nelson are vibrant young talents that look set to give Emery imminent selection headaches. After his starting eleven failed to pressurise a Manchester United team that looked there for the taking on Monday night, will it be long before Emery is tempted to chance his arm with some of his youngsters in the Premier League?
MAN OF THE MATCH – Gabriel Martinelli (Arsenal)
The 18-year old Martinelli has had a sensational start to his Arsenal career. He backed up his pair of goals against Nottingham Forest in the EFL Cup last week with another two here, and laid a third on a plate for Ceballos. Martinelli was a constant menace for the whole night and was unlucky not to secure a hat-trick. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang currently represents a formidable blockage to his path into the first team in the Premier League, but Martinelli’s star is rising fast.
Gabriel Martinelli of FC Arsenal celebrates after scoring his team's second goal with team mates during the UEFA Europa League group F match between Arsenal FC and Standard Liege at Emirates Stadium on October 3, 2019 in London, United Kingdom.
13’ GOAL! Arsenal 1 (Martinelli 13) Standard Liege 0 This is a lovely goal. Tierney whips in a delicious cross from the left, right across the front post, and Martinelli darts across the six yard box to glance his header unstoppably into the net.
16’ GOAL! Arsenal 2 (Martinelli 16) Standard Liege 0 It's two! A cross from Nelson on the left lands at the feet of Martinelli. He steps out of one challenge, pirouettes, and then plants a right footed shot into the far corner. He's on a hat-trick already!
22’ GOAL! Arsenal 3 (Willock 22) Standard Liege 0 It's three! Arsenal are creating havoc on the left. Nelson cuts in and unloads a shot again from the left. It's blocked but falls to Willock in the area, who controls it instantly and tucks it into the bottom right corner!
53’ CLOSE! Arsenal are savaging Liege down the left again. Tierney finds Nelson in the area, who squares the ball across the six-yard box. Martinelli slides in at the back post but can't get enough of a touch to get it into the net, and the ball drifts out of play.
57’ GOAL! Arsenal 4 (Ceballos 57) Standard Liege 0 Martinelli turns provider, and it's a first Arsenal goal for Ceballos! From a short corner Willock plays in Martinelli to the byline, he stands up a dinked cross over the goalkeeper and Ceballos steams in to prod it over the line from a yard out.
89’ CLOSE! A Tierney whipped ball from the left finds the onrushing Ceballos in the box, but he plants his header straight at Milinkovic-Savic. Seconds later, Aubameyang digs the ball out of his feet in the area but scoops the ball just over the bar.
Arsenal have won six consecutive European matches for the first time at the Emirates.
Standard Liege have now lost all five of their European fixtures with Arsenal, conceding 19 goals in the process.