Joe Willock stands out again as Arsenal put four past Molde

Arsenal vs Molde

Arsenal returned to European action a short time ago.

The Gunners would play host to Norwegian outfit Molde in their 3rd Europa League group game of the season.

Arsenal headed into the tie looking two make it three wins from three in Europe this term having already seen off Rapid Vienna and Dundalk.

Thursday’s tie, though, was arguably the north Londoner’s toughest test of the current Europa League campaign so far, with Molde also having picked up maximum points from their first two group games.

Despite this, when all was said and done at the Emirates, Arsenal eventually picked up a dominant win over Erling Moe’s side.

Mikel Arteta put out a fairly strong starting eleven, though Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was only afforded a spot on the bench:

Stalemate

Arsenal would begin the tie with a back-four in a 4-3-3, a formation Arteta has been slowly trying to integrate the Gunners into this season.

Joe Willock calved out the first half-chance of the tie, whipping a ball across the Molde box at pace, which Eddie Nketiah was inches away from connecting with.

Nketiah would then force a solid save out of the Molde keeper moments later after this time being slipped in by Nicolas Pepe.

Despite Arsenal’s early dominance though, it would be Molde who opened the scoring with a spectacular effort.

Martin Ellingsen picked up the ball around 25 yards out in ackers of space before curling a sensational effort past Bernd Leno.

Arsenal looked rather sluggish after going 1-0 down but eventually started to come to life 35 minutes in.

Pepe would then smash the ball across goal to Nketiah who directed the ball into the net, but the flag was raised for offside, despite the hitman actually being about a yard on.

It mattered not though, as an Nketiah cutback directed towards Willock forced a Molde defender to nudge the ball into his own net on the stroke of half time.

Willock impresses again

Molde started the second 45 much more aggressively, pressing Arsenal in great numbers when they attempted to play out from the back.

Arsenal, however, came close to taking the lead after Molde’s keeper deflected a Willock cross straight into Sead Kolasinac’s path who somehow managed to miss an open goal from around three yards out.

Arsenal would eventually take the lead 61 minutes in, with Willock once again involved in forcing a mistake, playing a lovely 1-2 with Granit Xhaka before directing his pass across goal which was then put in by Sinyan.

Nicola Pepe then put the result beyond doubt with just over 20 minutes remaining, finishing smartly from a Bukayo Saka cross.

Willock came close to adding Arsenal’s 4th of the day and capping off a solid display 74 minutes in, but Molde’s keeper saved well.

However, the midfielder was eventually rewarded for his valiant display with just minutes of the tie remaining, curling a lovely effort past Linde.

The final whistle eventually blew with the score at 4-1 and the Gunners sitting three points clear atop of Group B.

In truth, Arsenal didn’t have an overly impressive evening in north London, despite the rather flattering scoreline.

However, the main positive from a Gunners perspective, as was the case vs Dundalk last week, was the display of Joe Willock.

The Englishman has barely had a sniff in the Premier League this term, but it is hard to argue Willock doesn’t offer an attacking presence which can’t really be found in any of Arsenal’s other central midfielders.

As a result, though the youngster may not be suited to start against aggressive teams such as Manchester City, he would surely add something extra in the final third for the Gunners when they are forced to try and break down the Premier League sides who sit deep, such as Leicester City.

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Arsenal vs Molde Arsenal returned to European action a short time ago. The Gunners would play host to Norwegian outfit Molde in their 3rd Europa League group game of the season. Arsenal headed into the tie looking two make it three wins from three in Europe this term having already seen off Rapid Vienna andFootball (soccer) greatest goals and highlights | 101 Great Goals – Feed

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