Three things that stood out in Arsenal’s win over Brentford

Arsenal players celebrate a goal against Brentford. (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)
Arsenal players celebrate a goal against Brentford. (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images) /
Arsenal players celebrate a goal against Brentford (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
Arsenal players celebrate a goal against Brentford (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images) /

Arsenal beat Brentford 3-0  at the Gtech Community Stadium in London on Sunday. William SalibaGabriel Jesus and Fabio Vieira scored for the Gunners in the 17th, 28th and 49th minute, respectively.

With that victory, Arsenal regained the top spot in the league table with 18 points from seven matches. The Gunners are now ahead of second place Manchester City by a solitary point. Mikel Arteta’s side gave a good account of themselves against Brentford after their 1-3 loss to Manchester United.

On that note, we take a look at three things that stood out from the match.

Arsenal broke the deadlock through a Saliba header

Arsenal started the match with a 4-2-3-1 formation, with Vieira replacing an injured Martin Oedgaard as the no. 10. Kieran Tierney replaced Oleksandr Zinchenko as the left-back as the Gunners started dominating the match from the very beginning.

Vieira impressed with his deft touches and a few of the forward passes he played. He also swapped positions with Bukayo Saka at times as Arsenal primarily attacked through the inside-right channel. In the meantime, Gabriel Martinelli played a one-two with Granit Xhaka to penetrate into the box, but found his shot blocked by a Brentford player. Thomas Partey stayed back and spread the play with his intelligent passing, which allowed Xhaka to venture forward often.

However, for all their dominance, Arsenal were unable to break into the opposition ball too many times and had to wait until the 16th minute to get their first corner. That corner proved to be fruitful as Saliba jumped to score with a slick back-header that hit the far post before going in. It was the French centre-back’s second goal of the season.

Jesus increased the deficit with yet another header

The goal allowed the visitors to settle down a bit and they started looking more comfortable with their passing. Brentford relied primarily on counter-attacks, but struggled to have any attempts at the opposition goal.

The home side started the match with five defenders and kept crowding their own penalty box to prevent the Gunners from breaking through. However, the visitors scored their second goal through yet another header as Xhaka’s inch-perfect cross from the middle third found Jesus inside the Brentford penalty box and the Brazilian finished with a neatly-placed header.

Arsenal, who had around 70 percent ball-possession during the initial 20 minutes of the game, finished the first half with 64 percent of it. However, they could only muster four attempts in the first half as Brentford continued to defend desperately. Still, Arteta could leave the pitch with a relaxed mindset at half-time as his side had secured a comfortable lead.

The Gunners scored again in the second half to thrash Brentford

The Gunners continued to have the ball inside the opposition half after the break and it was not long before Vieira ensured the win with another strike. He found the ball in the final third and scored with a stunning left-footer from the edge of the Brentford penalty box as the ball hit the post before finding the net. The Portuguese midfielder’s ability to hit the ball nicely was evident from his display on Sunday.

The goal gave Vieira a lot of confidence and he started falling back more often to get the ball as the match progressed. The likes of Saka and Gabriel also tried their luck by taking shots from outside the penalty box, but could not score.

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Brentford, meanwhile, kept making sporadic attacks at the Arsenal goal and also made a few substitutions. Arsenal also made a double substitution in the 78th minute, with Eddie Nketiah and Albert Sambi Lokonga replacing Martinelli and Partey, respectively. The Gunners could have scored their fourth, but Jesus’ shot at goal, which was taken after the Brazilian got the better of a couple of defenders, was saved by the Brentford goalkeeper.