Brighton 0-1 Arsenal: Laca makes the difference, but Saka quickly establishing himself as Arteta’s key player


Brighton 0-1 Arsenal: Laca makes the difference, but Saka quickly establishing himself as Arteta’s key player

Arsenal got the better of Brighton & Hove Albion this evening, with one of the club’s young stars having shone brightest above all others.

Lacazette on target

Mikel Arteta’s men made the trip to the Amex a short time ago, for their latest Premier League outing.

The Gunners headed into proceedings with their tails up, on the back of a morale boosting 3-point haul versus capital rivals Chelsea at the weekend.

Arsenal were no doubt fully aware, though, that one positive result does not make up for a frankly abysmal campaign to this point, with a 2nd-straight victory this evening having been of the utmost importance.

Brighton 0-1 Arsenal: Laca makes the difference, but Saka quickly establishing himself as Arteta’s key player

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta dejected on the touchline during the Premier League match at Emirates Stadium, London. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/PA Images via Getty Images)

When the 90 minutes were said and done, though, to their credit, build upon their first win in 8 is precisely what the Gunners managed.

The game’s solitary goal came midway through the 2nd-half, courtesy of Alexandre Lacazette.

Remarkably, just 20 seconds after being introduced to the fray by Mikel Arteta, the Frenchman was picked out by the surging Bukayo Saka, before slotting a confident finish inside the hosts’ near post:

The ensuing half-hour saw Arsenal settle into a more defensive setup, forcing Brighton to attempt to break them down.

The weakened Seagulls, however, without the services of the likes Tariq Lamptey and Adam Lallana, toiled in their efforts to do so, eventually resulting in the visitors departing the Amex with all 3 points.

Super Saka

On the back of the final whistle sounding on the South coast a short time ago, a number of members of Mikel Arteta’s squad have since been singled out for praise.

Though Arsenal didn’t actually perform all that well this evening (particularly during the first-half), there were a couple of shining lights.

The most obvious is Alexandre Lacazette, who emerged from the bench to make the game’s telling contribution with his 3rd goal in 3 games.

Another was Emile Smith-Rowe, who, after showcasing his capabilities as a much-needed source of creativity over the weekend, impressed once again at the Amex.

On the back of a first-half during which he, much like the rest of the visitors’ stars, struggled to get into proceedings, the gifted midfielder dazzled following the interval, looking composed and full of invention:

One of Arsenal’s XI, however, stood head and shoulders above the rest versus Graham Potter’s Brighton.

The player in question? Bukayo Saka.

19-year-old Saka is widely regarded as one of European football’s finest young talents, and this evening showcased exactly why.

The English international, above anything else, is just so impressively brave.

Arsenal is a huge football club, boasting a number of experienced, high-profile stars.

When backs are against the wall, however, it so often appears to be Saka, despite his tender years, who is prepared to grab the game by the scruff of the neck, and step up.

Amid a fine all-round performance this evening, this very trait was on show for all to see en route to his side’s opener, as, shortly after teeing up Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for what looked certain to be the clash’s opening goal, the teen rinsed Dan Burn, before laying on for goalscorer Lacazette to bag all 3 points.

Saka is fast becoming the most crucial member of Mikel Arteta’s squad.

The Gunners youth product can be utilised in almost any position on the pitch, and can be trusted to produce courtesy of a rare combination of talent, intelligence and sheer will.

Whilst Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang continues to struggle, Thomas Partey remains sidelined and Gabriel Magalhaes sits out with Covid-19, Saka this evening again stepped forth in his manager’s hour of need.

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Liverpool FC 15 17 32
2 Leicester City FC 16 9 29
3 Everton FC 15 7 29
4 Manchester United FC 14 7 27
5 Aston Villa FC 14 14 26
6 Chelsea FC 16 13 26
7 Tottenham Hotspur FC 15 11 26
8 Manchester City FC 14 9 26
9 Southampton FC 15 6 25
10 West Ham United FC 15 2 22
11 Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 15 -5 21
12 Leeds United 15 -5 20
13 Crystal Palace FC 16 -9 19
14 Newcastle United FC 14 -7 18
15 Arsenal FC 15 -4 17
16 Brighton & Hove Albion FC 15 -6 13
17 Burnley FC 14 -12 13
18 Fulham FC 15 -10 11
19 West Bromwich Albion 15 -19 8
20 Sheffield United FC 15 -18 2
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 13
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur FC 11
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City FC 11
Calvert-Lewin, Dominic Everton FC 11
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United FC 10
Bamford, Patrick Leeds United 10
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur FC 9
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace FC 8
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United FC 8
Rashford, Marcus Manchester United FC 7
Ings, Danny Southampton FC 6
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 6
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa FC 6
Abraham, Tammy Chelsea FC 6
Grealish, Jack Aston Villa FC 5
Firmino, Roberto Liverpool FC 5
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion FC 5
Barnes, Harvey Leicester City FC 5
Lacazette, Alexandre Arsenal FC 5
El Ghazi, Anwar Aston Villa FC 5