Eddie Nketiah’s first Premier League hat-trick stole the show in Arsenal’s 5-0 win over Sheffield United as the Gunners maintained their unbeaten start to the Premier League campaign in some style. Express Sport picks out four things learned from Arsenal’s latest victory.
Jesus’ reaction to Nketiah hat-trick
Jesus’ wretched injury record this season has presented a chance for Nketiah to nail down the starting No 9 spot. And a first Premier League hat-trick for Nketiah the same week that Jesus suffered an injury setback will certainly go a long way to helping him take the starting spot.
Jesus may have to work a bit harder when he’s fit enough to return, but he’s clearly supportive of his team-mate regardless of what it potentially means for his role in the team. Jesus got up out of his seat to applaud Nketiah’s third and that speaks volumes for the togetherness Arteta has built in this Arsenal squad over the past few years.
Nketiah’s spot in Arsenal’s squad was once again questioned this summer with Arsenal being linked with a new central striker. Kai Havertz’s signing was originally seen as a potential blow to Nketiah’s chances of minutes at the Emirates, potentially demoting him to third-choice.
But Arteta continued to back the England star, who’s seemingly taken over the mantle as Arsenal’s starting central striker. There has been some questions over his form in front of goal, but he was at his ruthless best against a Sheffield United side devoid of any confidence.
Arteta will want Nketiah to kick on from here, but his performance is proof that he belongs in this Arsenal side.
Martinelli injury worry
Not many players took more of a battering from Sheffield United players than Gabriel Martinelli. The Brazilian was fouled on multiple occasions and stayed down on the floor after a tough challenge from Jayden Bogle.
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Martinelli was seen swinging a low arm in retaliation to the last challenge before Arteta brought him off the field moments later. The Arsenal boss will be hoping Martinelli survived unscathed. Unsurprising he was brought off around the hour mark.
Anything other than a win over Sheffield United at home for Arsenal would have represented a massive failure for Arteta’s side. But they still have to get the job done on the pitch to keep up the pressure at the top of the table.
It’s now 10 games unbeaten in the league to start the campaign, including wins over both Manchester clubs already. Arguably their biggest test yet will come next weekend when they travel to St James’ Park to face off against a Newcastle side who have only lost two home league games in 2023.
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