Mikel Arteta said Arsenal will not take participating in the Europa League for granted ahead of Thursday's tie with Bodo/Glimt, but acknowledges the Gunners have loftier ambitions.

Arsenal sit top of the Premier League table after a scintillating start to the season; only twice have they bettered this campaign's return of 21 points after eight games in the competition, earning 22 points in 2004-05 and 2007-08. 

Having missed out to Tottenham in a fierce battle for Champions League qualification last term, however, Arsenal are competing with Bodo/Glimt, PSV and FC Zurich in Group A of Europe's second-tier competition. 

While Arteta knows Champions League football must be the aim for his team, he said Arsenal will "make the most" of their continental campaign.

"Playing in Europe is always great. We know we would want to be playing yesterday or today, but that's the next step," he said on Wednesday. 

"This is the reality, and we have to make the most of it.

"It's a test for the squad, in terms of the numbers and the quality. If you make changes, how much you notice it, whether you can continue consistently playing at the top level.

"Everyone's going to have to do that after the World Cup, especially with the schedule.

"It's a competition that is really important for us, we know how important it is to be on top of the group and the home advantage, we have to use it."

Meanwhile, William Saliba and Bukayo Saka have both expressed confidence they will sign new contracts after emerging as key components in Arteta's side, and the Arsenal boss says the club is working on deals for the duo, as well as fresh terms for Gabriel Martinelli.

Arsenal have been forced to sell several stars after allowing them to run their contracts down in the past, but Arteta moved to quell fears of a repeat, adding: "Obviously we have to plan for the future, and we are all working on it.

"Edu is on top of it, and all the board. We will try to do things in the right way, being fair, and rewarding the players that – in our opinion – have a big future for the club.

"When we have something to announce, we will do it. Every player is different and what happened in the past, the people that were in charge had the right reasons.

"We will try to do the same thing and make sure the club is always protected, that the club is always in a good position to move forward, and the players are happy."

Arsenal saw their first scheduled home game of the Europa League campaign, against PSV, postponed following the death of Queen Elizabeth II last month, and will look to end a poor continental run at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday.

The Gunners have failed to win any of their last three home European matches (D2 L1), their worst such run since they went six without victory between October 2002 and September 2003.

Gabriel Jesus is setting the standard that is driving Arsenal's early-season charge at the top of the Premier League, and he came up trumps in his first north London derby.

Arsenal's win over Tottenham came in Saturday's early game and was followed by plenty of drama later, as Liverpool were held by Brighton and Hove Albion in a rip-roaring match at Anfield featuring a Leandro Trossard hat-trick.

Newcastle United earned a second win of the season, brushing off Fulham at Craven Cottage, while Graham Potter's Chelsea had substitute Conor Gallagher to thank for their late winner at Crystal Palace.

With goals and drama in abundance, here Stats Perform unpacks the pick of the data.

Arsenal 3-1 Tottenham: Ton up for Kane, but it's Partey time for Arsenal after derby win

Harry Kane became the first Premier League player to reach 100 away goals in the competition, but that was scant consolation for Tottenham after this derby defeat.

Arsenal were able to celebrate a third successive home league win over Spurs – the first time that has happened since 2013 – and they are unbeaten at home in this fixture for 12 games now (W8 D4).

It was a win to savour for Arsenal, with Thomas Partey's opening goal rounding off a 21-pass move, going down as the Gunner's sixth goal since December 26, 2019 to have come from a sequence of 20 or more passes. Only Liverpool and Manchester City have had more in that time. 

Jesus restored the Gunners' lead after Kane's penalty brought Spurs level, with Arsenal's close-season signing from City having managed five goals and three assists already in the Premier League. Only Erling Haaland (12) has had more goal involvements in the early weeks of this season.

It fell to Granit Xhaka to put the seal on the win, after Emerson Royal was sent off. The Arsenal midfielder grabbed his second Premier League goal of the season, with this the first campaign where he has managed more than one league strike since he netted four times in the 2018-19 season.

Liverpool 3-3 Brighton and Hove Albion: Trossard heroics stun Reds

Leandro Trossard became just the third opposing player to score a Premier League hat-trick at Anfield, joining former Coventry City winger Peter Ndlovu and ex-Arsenal forward Andrey Arshavin in that curious club. Arshavin famously hit four in a 4-4 draw in April 2009, the highest-scoring Premier League draw at Liverpool's home ground.

Saturday's feat meant Belgium international Trossard became the first Brighton player to score a Premier League hat-trick, and it left Liverpool four points behind the Seagulls after seven games each, with this game quite the baptism for new boss Roberto De Zerbi.

Liverpool have just two wins from seven games, and they were thankful for Roberto Firmino's sharp finishing as he scored twice, taking his tally for the season to five Premier League goals, all coming at Anfield. He scored five across the 2021-22 season, all away from home.

Mohamed Salah remains stuck on two goals in this campaign but he marked his 200th Premier League appearance with a 50th assist when he set up Firmino to trim Brighton's lead to 2-1 in the first half. Salah becomes just the third African player to reach 50 assists in the competition, after Didier Drogba (55) and Riyad Mahrez (51).

 

Crystal Palace 1-2 Chelsea: Gallagher returns to rock Eagles

Conor Gallagher came off the bench to deliver a 90th-minute knockout blow with Chelsea's winner against the side they loaned him to last season.

It meant Crystal Palace's losing run against Chelsea extended to 10 Premier League matches, and also boosted the Blues' record to nine wins in their last 10 away London derbies against all teams.

New Chelsea boss Graham Potter watched on in his first Premier League game since joining from Brighton, and he saw former Barcelona and Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang mark his league debut for the visitors with a first-half equaliser. Aubameyang also scored in his first game for Arsenal (against Everton in February 2018).

Odsonne Edouard's opener in the seventh minute was the earliest goal Chelsea have conceded in a Premier League away game since January 2021, when Wilfred Ndidi scored for Leicester City in the sixth minute.

Fulham 1-4 Newcastle United: Magpies take flight thanks to Almiron's capital double

Miguel Almiron had been Newcastle's home boy of late, with his last seven Premier League goals coming at St James' Park, so Saturday's double at Craven Cottage bucked a trend.

A fine volley followed by a close-range finish from the Paraguayan helped Newcastle to their joint-biggest victory under Eddie Howe in the Premier League (also 3-0 vs Norwich City in April), and a biggest league win in London since beating Fulham 4-0 in May 2019.

Almiron last scored away from home in the Premier League in another 4-1 win for Newcastle – against Howe's Bournemouth in July 2020.

Fulham were hindered by a red card for Nathaniel Chalobah after seven minutes and 26 seconds, the earliest a player has been sent off for the club in the Premier League since Ian Pearce against Palace in October 2004 (sixth minute).

Mikel Arteta saluted Gabriel Jesus for taking Arsenal "to a different level" after the Brazilian scored in Saturday's 3-1 derby win over Tottenham.

Jesus seized on Hugo Lloris' mistake to hand Arsenal a 2-1 second-half lead at the Emirates Stadium, before Granit Xhaka made the points safe with an excellent low finish.

Only Erling Haaland (12) has been involved in more Premier League goals than Jesus (eight) in the Premier League this season.

Meanwhile, only Andrey Arshavin (nine) has recorded more goal contributions in his first eight Premier League appearances for Arsenal.

Speaking to BT Sport after the win, manager Arteta said the drive that Jesus has brought since joining from Manchester City has improved his young team this season.

"It's his winning mentality," Arteta said. "The way he trains every day, it brings confidence to the team, and he has taken us to a different level."

Table-topping Arsenal ended Tottenham's unbeaten start to the Premier League season with their convincing win, and Arteta described the Gunners' performance as "phenomenal".

"We went for it, and we created great energy in the stadium and deserved to win the game," Arteta said.

"With our way of playing, we can attack in different ways. They [Tottenham] don't need much, and you have the feeling that they can create. You have to live with that.

"But we didn't have that in the back of our mind. We were free, courageous and brave, and this is what we demand from the players. It gives us a lot of encouragement and confidence to believe that we can play at this level."

Arteta is just the third manager in Arsenal's history to win each of his first three home games against Tottenham, after George Morrell between 1909 and 1911 and Terry Neill between 1977 and 1979. He feels delighted by the bond between his side and the fans.

"We have connected with our supporters and when that happens it is a really powerful thing," Arteta added when speaking to BBC Sport.

"We had a really meaningful opportunity to give a lot of people happiness on a beautiful day, and we have delivered that, and it is a really great feeling.

"We are focusing on what we are doing. This is a sign that we are going in the right direction. We need to maintain that now and go for it.

"You feel the desire and humility – they haven't won anything yet and that is important to have that humility, which is a big driver for us."

"Every defeat has a scar," said Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta ahead of the north London derby against Tottenham. Some of those scars, one would imagine, are bigger than others.

Saturday's reunion with Spurs would have evoked particularly painful memories for Arsenal players and fans.

The last time the sides had met, in May, Arsenal missed the chance to secure Champions League qualification as they lost 3-0 at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. When the Gunners then lost again in their next match at Newcastle United, Tottenham stole in to finish fourth.

Of course, the entire collapse played out before the Amazon cameras for Arsenal's All or Nothing documentary series.

Antonio Conte, the Tottenham coach, is yet to finish the series – although he plans to – but did confirm this week he had watched "that episode".

However, Arteta's team, Conte added, are "better" than in 2021-22 – "not only the quality but also the mentality of Arsenal".

Indeed, Arsenal suffered another damaging 3-0 defeat late last season at Crystal Palace but won 2-0 on their return to Selhurst Park on the opening day of this season. Before the international break, there was a 3-0 win at Brentford that Arsenal players were not quiet in celebrating, having also been humiliated there on their previous visit.

So, the revenge tour rolled on to Tottenham, with Arteta determined to use that May reverse "in the right way", suggesting Arsenal were not just better but better specifically because of that setback.

And for almost 30 minutes at Emirates Stadium, just about everything went to plan.

Arsenal – top of the Premier League table heading into a game against Spurs for the first time since 2007 – played as they had done all season.

The Gunners dominated possession and penned Tottenham in. When Thomas Partey curled in a brilliant opener from 25 yards after 20 minutes, Kane was the only Spurs player ahead of the ball.

It was the fourth time Arsenal had scored this season following a sequence of 10 or more passes – matching Manchester City's league high – and the third in their past two fixtures alone.

An eighth Arsenal goal in the opening half an hour of matches this season represented another Premier League benchmark, but their familiar frailties were also on show before that period was out.

While forcing Spurs back suited Arteta's game plan, it also played into the visitors' hands.

Tottenham lead the league in direct attacks in 2022-23, and the first in a series of rapid counters ended with a rash challenge from Gabriel on Richarlison and a Spurs penalty.

No fixture in Premier League history has seen more spot-kicks, and when Harry Kane coolly converted, it marked his fourth consecutive goal from the spot at Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal were suddenly struggling, with only the imperious William Saliba stemming the tide, and in need of the mentality Conte had lauded.

Yet the Spurs coach had also identified the cause of this shift, citing the importance of Oleksandr Zinchenko and Gabriel Jesus – "two players who are used to winning" – arriving from City.

Zinchenko was fit to start, while Jesus was refreshed after missing out on the Brazil squad and vowing to "improve" in a bid to earn a World Cup recall.

Arsenal's number nine attempted a game-high four shots – all of them after Spurs had equalised – and there was no surprise when he was the man on hand to prod in a vital second after Hugo Lloris twice failed to gather in front of his goal line.

With Arsenal this time determined not to shoot themselves in the foot, it was Tottenham's turn to lose their composure, seeing Emerson Royal sent off for a poor challenge on Gabriel Martinelli and failing to track the rejuvenated Granit Xhaka as he ran through to add the clinching third.

Coasting thereafter, a partying Emirates crowd welcomed Arsenal's first win against 'big six' opposition this season – key, surely, to hopes to turn a strong start into a genuine title challenge.

Maybe success against City or Liverpool – teams Arteta has beaten only once in 10 combined attempts – will be required to turn the doubters into believers, for the Arsenal manager has now won each of his first three league matches at home to Spurs and had not until now looked like leading a team into contention.

But given the manner in which last season ended, given the self-inflicted adversity before half-time, this 3-1 Arsenal victory could not been as anything other than a significant step forward.

"It's the nicest game of the season by a mile," Arteta said on Friday. Little over 24 hours later, unlike in May, it felt like it.

Second-half goals from Gabriel Jesus and Granit Xhaka fired Premier League leaders Arsenal to a 3-1 win over 10-man Tottenham in an entertaining North London Derby on Saturday.

Arsenal were rewarded for a bright start when Thomas Partey produced a stunning long-range finish after 20 minutes, but Harry Kane swiftly levelled with a penalty.

The impressive Gunners hit the front again when Jesus bundled home following Hugo Lloris' mistake, and Tottenham's hopes of a comeback were dashed when Emerson Royal was sent off. 

Xhaka then drilled into the bottom-right corner as Mikel Arteta's rampant side moved four points clear of Manchester City and consigned their fierce rivals to a first Premier League defeat of the season.

Both goalkeepers were called into action during a lively start, with Lloris tipping Gabriel Martinelli's fierce volley onto his right-hand post before Aaron Ramsdale clawed Richarlison's effort away from the bottom-right corner.

Arsenal enjoyed the better of the early exchanges and took a deserved lead when Partey curled an excellent first-time strike into the top-right corner from outside the area.

But the Gunners contrived to gift Tottenham an equaliser after 31 minutes, with Kane stroking home his 44th London derby goal from the penalty spot after Gabriel Magalhaes clumsily felled Richarlison.

Arsenal required just four minutes of the second half to move back into the lead, as Lloris pushed Bukayo Saka's tame shot straight to Jesus, who gratefully prodded home.

Jesus missed a good chance to extend Arsenal's lead when he failed to convert a header three minutes later, but Spurs' task was made far more difficult when Emerson saw red for a reckless challenge on Martinelli.

Emerson's dismissal allowed Arsenal to push forward in search of a third goal, and they made the points safe when Xhaka fired a low finish beyond Lloris from inside the box.

Mikel Arteta expects Arsenal to benefit from Gabriel Jesus' absence from the Brazil squad as he hopes to show Tite what he is missing before the World Cup.

Arsenal are top of the Premier League ahead of the north London derby against Tottenham on Saturday, but none of their three senior Brazilian stars were called up by the Selecao last month.

Gabriel, Gabriel Martinelli and Jesus had all been part of Tite's squad during the previous international window in June.

Yet they now face a race against time to prove themselves before Qatar 2022, which kicks off next month.

Jesus was a particularly surprising omission, having scored four goals and assisted another three in seven league appearances since joining Arsenal in July.

But Arteta revealed a determined response from his number nine, telling reporters of Jesus: "He's incredibly humble.

"He accepted the decision and the way he trained, it was just: 'Okay, I need to improve. I need to get better. I need to do more. I really want to be there [at the World Cup], it's a big aspiration for me, it's an incredible opportunity. And I'm in the right place to do that.'

"So, I think we will see that on the pitch again."

At international level, Jesus appears to be in direct competition with Spurs striker Richarlison, who has hit form at the right time with seven goals in his past six outings for Brazil.

Jesus is set to come up against him this weekend, but Arteta says his striker cannot be concerned by how others fare.

"He can only control what he can do. He cannot control what other players do," the Arsenal manager said. "And he's only focusing on that.

"So, he has ambition. We know that he plays with incredible commitment. And [on Saturday] he will play that way."

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has reciprocated praise from his Tottenham counterpart Antonio Conte ahead of Saturday's north London derby.

Conte commented on the improvement of Arsenal after they showed "patience" with Arteta, with the Gunners sitting top of the Premier League after six wins from their first seven games.

Spurs are just a point behind, though, and pipped their rivals to the final Champions League spot in a frenetic run-in last season.

"Not only the start but the journey they had since Antonio joined as well and how things changed," Arteta said at a press conference on Friday. "They have a clear identity... both teams expect a tough match [on Saturday]."

Arteta refused to be drawn on whether Thomas Partey, Kieran Tierney and Oleksandr Zinchenko would be part of the squad for the Spurs clash, but he did comment on Emile Smith Rowe, who recently underwent surgery to deal with a groin injury and is expected to be out until after the World Cup.

Smith Rowe has played just 48 minutes for Arsenal's first team this season, all from substitute appearances, and a statement from the club on Thursday said his "successful surgery took place in London in the past few days and Emile's rehabilitation programme is already underway. We are hopeful that Emile will return to full training in December."

Arteta made clear the decision to undergo surgery came from the player, saying: "We had to make a decision and we could not continue with that uncertainty.

"The player was the first one demanding that he wanted an end decision and then we have to support him on that.

"After a surgery it's very difficult to give a timeline. We need to go step-by-step. We know before the World Cup he's not going to be involved."

Antonio Conte has pointed to Arsenal's improvement under Mikel Arteta as proof that "time and patience" is needed to succeed in the Premier League.

Arsenal sit top of the table after winning six of their first seven games this season.

Tottenham boss Conte takes his team to the Emirates Stadium on Saturday for the north London derby, sitting just two places and one point behind the Gunners after their own impressive start to the campaign.

Speaking at a press conference on Thursday, Conte – who has previously spoken about needing time to get Spurs up to the level of other top clubs in England – was keen to shine a light on the patience shown by their rivals.

"I think the club backed Arteta in these years, and you are seeing that when you trust in a person, and Arsenal showed also in a tough period now with Arteta to back him in every moment," he said. "And now they are having good results.

"I think they're doing a good job. But in my opinion, it's always very, very important to go together with the manager and with the club.

"If you want to build something important, you have to go together to have a good relationship and I think the manager in every decision that is going to [be made] has to have a good explanation to the club why I want this [player] and not this player.

"It's right for the manager to show the vision that you have and then the club has to agree with them. I think to have a good relationship, a great link between the manager and the club, for sure you [will] have a much better future than the present."

Conte has been repeatedly questioned about his future at Spurs, especially with rumours of a return to Juventus should the Italian giants part with Massimiliano Allegri.

However, the 53-year-old wants to focus on his job in London, reiterating the need for patience.

"I know that we need to have time and a bit of patience to try to build a path to become seriously competitive with [Manchester] City, Liverpool, Chelsea, [Manchester] United and Arsenal," he added.

"For me, it's important to realise this and to understand that we need time and patience. I enjoy working with this club and it is very important to have a good relationship with the owner, with Fabio [Paratici], to stay in the same line, the same vision.

"Then I know very well that maybe in other clubs you have the possibility to have a path that's not so long."

Only Manchester United, Chelsea and West Ham spent more than Tottenham's £152.91million in the recent transfer window in the Premier League, but Conte maintains the club have to do things differently to their rivals when it comes to improving their squad.

"I hear sometimes that people [praise you for] two or three good results, but it's important to be honest, to know what the reality [is] and to be ready to fight, to be ready to work to try to improve the situation," he said.

"You know very well that you need time and patience to improve the squad slowly. And you have to know that other clubs can go into the transfer market and put [in] a lot of money and you have to do things with common sense and I think maybe it's the right way for a club like Tottenham."

Arsene Wenger believes Arsenal have a "good chance" of mounting a serious challenge for the Premier League title this season, and has praised Mikel Arteta for returning a sense of identity to the club.

Arsenal hold a one-point advantage over Manchester City and Tottenham at the top of the Premier League table, having won six of their first seven games this campaign.

This represents just the third time Arsenal have won six of their first seven games in a Premier League season, having previously done so under Wenger in 2004-05 and 2007-08.

While City and Tottenham have joined Arsenal in remaining unbeaten so far, last season's runners-up Liverpool have struggled, posting their lowest points tally after six games of a season since Jurgen Klopp took charge (nine).

Wenger, who won three league titles during his 22-year spell with the Gunners, believes his former club could capitalise on other sides' struggles to make a push for silverware.

"I think they have a good chance this season, because I don't see any super dominating team," he told Sky Sports.

"I believe that there's a good opportunity this season to do it, and of course, it's a bit of a special season as well because you have the World Cup in the middle.

"You don't know how much that will affect the performances of individual players in the teams, and overall, I believe there's a good opportunity there."

Arteta was named the Premier League's manager of the month after leading Arsenal to a perfect August, but Wenger believes his most impressive achievement has been to establish an identity at the Emirates Stadium.

"I personally think that Mikel Arteta was very conscious of the values of the club, because he has been educated at Arsenal, he was captain of my teams, and he wanted to restore the values of the club," Wenger added.

"Overall, I think he has done that well. After that, you need to create the belief and a sense of belonging, that you belong to something special, something bigger than you that you want to serve.

"On that front, I believe he has done well. I'm still in touch with them and overall, I believe they are going the right way.

"Arsenal is a special club, with special values. There's a good balance between tradition and forward-thinking, and overall I think they are doing that well again now."

Arsenal will face a major test of their credentials when the Premier League resumes after the international break, as they host Tottenham in the season's first North London derby on October 1.

Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka called on the club and his team-mates to "protect" Ethan Nwaneri after the teenager made Premier League history.

Nwaneri became the youngest player to ever appear in the Premier League on Sunday as was introduced late on in Arsenal's 3-0 win over Brentford.

Aged 15 years and 181 days, Nwaneri broke the record set by Harvey Elliott when he came on for Fulham at 16 years and 30 days old.

Nwaneri was included in Mikel Arteta's squad partly due to injuries and was introduced near the end with the Gunners in complete control.

An England youth international, Nwaneri had trained with Arsenal's first team "a couple of times", according to Arteta, whose decision to bring him on was a "gut feeling".

Nwaneri has understandably dominated headlines since his historic cameo, but the need to protect him and keep him on his current path was not lost on Xhaka, who had known of the player's talent having taken charge of Arsenal Under-16s training sessions.

"To have a guy who is 15, who is 15 years younger than me… he looks old when I see him but the club can be proud of a player like him," Xhaka told reporters.

"He has a big future. If I am honest, I am doing my coaching licence and I have trained the Under-16s: you can see a big difference with him and the other guys. He is very, very special.

"Of course, you have to protect him as he is very young but if he keeps going like this with his hard work, he has a big, big future.

"I spoke with one Brentford guy and I told him this guy was 15 and he looked at me and said: 'F*** me, we are looking old!'

"So yes, of course, when you have 15 years difference you think: 'Okay the time is not gone but it is on the way'. But we are enjoying him, he is enjoying us as he has the quality.

"If I am honest, he is not with us a lot in training. I have maybe seen him twice or three times now. He is very shy, of course, but the time will come when he will be more with us, but you have to protect him and help him.

"Football is not everything for him and for us but yes, the club will help him and the experienced players have to help him."

Fabio Vieira marked his first Premier League start with a fine goal in Arsenal's 3-0 win over Brentford on Sunday but boss Mikel Arteta was more impressed with how he did the "ugly" things in the game.

William Saliba and Gabriel Jesus put the Gunners into a 2-0 half-time lead, before Vieira, who joined from Porto in June, rifled home from 25 yards to put the seal on a comprehensive victory that lifted the Gunners back to the top of the Premier League table.  

Arteta believes the attacking midfielder role that Vieira played is where he is best suited, yet hopes the 22-year-old will continue to undertake the dirty work that is often required to win games. 

"I think he's having a good progression," Arteta said. "Obviously he missed the whole of pre-season due to injury, which was really unlucky. But we know his talent, the reasons why we signed him and what he can bring to the team.

"To do it against Brentford, at this ground, on his debut, is a different story. He showed again his character and his qualities."

Asked what the 22-year-old's best position is, Arteta responded: "That's something that still needs to be decided. In those two attacking midfield positions, for sure. He's played off the side as well, so it's more about the relations he has in the unit and on his side, and where he is more comfortable. But the position he played today fits him really well.

"He's a creative player. He needs to play with his gut feeling and his instinct. That's what he needs to do and we need to create as many scenarios for him as possible to put his talent to the service of the team.

"What I like as well is the way he competes, and the way he went about the ugly part of the game really impressed me."

Arsenal have won more Premier League games than any other team so far this season (six). It is just the third time they have won as many as six of their first seven games of a Premier League campaign – previously doing so in 2004-05 and 2007-08 under Arsene Wenger (both six).

Central to that success has been captain Granit Xhaka, who made the joint-highest number of key passes against Brentford from a deep-lying midfield position (three, alongside Bukayo Saka).

Arteta was fulsome in his praise of the Switzerland international, saying: "His consistency, and how he goes about that every day is impressive.

"He has a willingness always to stay humble, to look forward and try to get better and when you do that, normally good things happen.

"I think he feels now that love and respect both ways [with the fans]. You see our supporters, the way they were singing to him as well, emotionally that makes him try to give even more.

"I'm really pleased for him because in my opinion he really deserves it."

Mikel Arteta's decision to include Ethan Nwaneri was a "pure gut feeling" after the 15-year-old made Premier League history at Brentford.

Arsenal were cruising towards a 3-0 victory over Thomas Frank's side on Sunday after goals from William Saliba, Gabriel Jesus and Fabio Vieira before Arteta sent on Nwaneri in stoppage time.

Aged just 15 years and 181 days, Nwaneri became the youngest player in Premier League history, breaking Harvey Elliott's record of 16 years and 30 days for Fulham.

Fellow youngster Lino Sousa was an unused substitute and Arteta suggested the injury to Martin Odegaard, alongside impressive performances for Arsenal's youth side, offered Nwaneri the chance.

"It was a pure gut feeling. I met the boy and really liked what I saw," the Gunners manager said.

"Per Mertesacker and the academy staff are giving me really good information, Edu as well. I met Ethan, he's trained a couple of times with us.

"[Saturday] he had to come because we have injuries, especially the injury of Martin and then I had that feeling that if the opportunity could come that I was going to do it."

While Arsenal were in complete control as Nwaneri was introduced with four minutes of added time indicated, Arteta said he sent on the youngster with little instruction.

"Those things it is better not to tell them," the Spaniard responded when asked if he had sent Nwaneri on with a message. "Just throw him [on] there and see what happens."

Arsenal leapfrogged Manchester City at the Premier League summit with victory and will have the international break to prepare for tough tests in their next two league clashes with Tottenham and Liverpool.

Thomas Frank labelled Arsenal as "title contenders" after the Gunners' convincing 3-0 victory at Brentford, where Mikel Arteta saw a "very different" team to the one defeated by the Bees last season.

Captain Martin Odegaard and Oleksandr Zinchenko were absent through injury on Sunday, but Arsenal rarely looked troubled as they condemned Brentford to their heaviest top-flight defeat at home since May 1947.

William Saliba and Gabriel Jesus scored first-half headers before Fabio Vieira's brilliant strike on his full league debut sealed the victory.

Tougher tests may come against Tottenham and Liverpool after the international break for Arsenal, who moved back above Manchester City at the Premier League summit, and Frank expects them to be challenging at the top this season.

"We lost 3-0, to the number one in the Premier League," Frank told Sky Sports. "I said before they are a top side.

"I think we performed quite well, not 10 [out of] 10 but if you want to win or get something out of the team flying, you cannot concede the first from a set-piece and then the second one.

"In general, unless it is something unbelievable brilliance from a set-piece, I want us to avoid every set-piece goal. There are a few bits we could have done better for the second.

"They didn't create that many chances but had quality in moments. We lost the game, I hate losing.

"They are top of the table so you cannot argue with that, they have done brilliantly. Looking at their quality, they must be title contenders."

It was a markedly different display to the one Arsenal turned in against Brentford in the corresponding fixture last season, which finished 2-0 to the hosts.

"A lot of people described what happened last year as a really bad day, the team had to evolve and journey together to react," Arteta said. 

"You can give up, question everybody, blame them or learn a lesson and look in the mirror. Today, there was obviously a very different team.

"It was very difficult in a rollercoaster of actions where you are constantly under pressure. They are very good at what they do but we managed to take the game how we wanted so credit to the boys.

"We wanted to get back to the top, yesterday [City] took it away from us, but we showed that desire from the first minute and we have done it."

Ethan Nwaneri made history for Arsenal at Brentford as he became the youngest player to appear in the Premier League after his second-half introduction on Sunday.

Mikel Arteta's side were without Martin Odegaard and Oleksandr Zinchenko for the trip to Brentford Community Stadium, with youngsters Nwaneri and Lino Sousa named on the bench.

William Saliba and Gabriel Jesus headed in first-half to put Arsenal in control, before Fabio Vieira marked his first Premier League start with a superb strike after the interval.

With four minutes of injury time added, Arteta sent on Nwaneri to replace Vieira as the 15-year-old etched his name into Premier League history.

The midfielder, aged just 15 years and 181 days, became the youngest player to feature in a Premier League match, breaking Harvey Elliott's record of 16 years and 30 days for Fulham.

Arsenal returned to the Premier League summit with a dominant 3-0 victory at Brentford, where Fabio Vieira scored on his first league start on Sunday.

Mikel Arteta's side saw their winning start ended by defeat at Manchester United in their previous league match, but they responded in emphatic fashion to move a point clear of Manchester City and Tottenham.

First-half goals from William Saliba and Gabriel Jesus put Arsenal in control, before Vieira – in for the injured Martin Odegaard – added a brilliant third after the interval.

With the points safe, Ethan Nwaneri, aged just 15 years and 181 days, became the youngest player in Premier League history as he appeared from the Arsenal bench for the closing stages.

Gabriel Martinelli slipped to spurn a glorious chance inside two minutes, but Arsenal soon punished Brentford for a timid start with two goals in quick succession.

Saliba met Bukayo Saka's corner with a near-post glance, which bounced off David Raya's right post and over the line before the goalkeeper could react, and then Jesus nodded in from Granit Xhaka's left-wing cross.

Saka and Kieran Tierney both fired off target from presentable opportunities, while Bryan Mbuemo flicked wide at the other end as Arsenal dominated the first half.

Vieira marked his full debut by whipping past Raya and in off the post from outside the area four minutes after the break.

Ivan Toney volleyed just over from an inventive free-kick routine, before Raya expertly denied a fizzing Jesus drive and a curling Saka effort as Brentford rarely threatened an unlikely comeback.

What does it mean? Arsenal banish Brentford demons

Arsenal were off the pace in their Premier League opener last season, losing 2-0 to newly promoted Brentford, but they banished those demons on Sunday.

The Bees had lost just one of their previous 17 top-flight London derbies at home yet proved no match for an in-form Arsenal, who picked up their sixth win in seven league games.

While Tottenham and Liverpool may prove tougher tasks in their next two league matches, Arsenal laid down another marker despite injury problems for the absent Odegaard and Oleksandr Zinchenko.

Super Saka

Saka continued his fine form for Arsenal as he laid on two assists to move to 37 goal involvements in the Premier League for the Gunners (18 goals, 19 assists).

That moved him clear of Nicolas Anelka (35) for the most Arsenal goal contributions in the competition while aged 21 or under, with Cesc Fabregas (63) the only player to tally more.

Timid Toney

Toney was handed a maiden England call-up this week after scoring five and assisting two more in just six league games – only Erling Haaland (12) has managed more goal involvements in the Premier League.

But the Brentford striker failed to leave his mark in this seventh match, not registering a single shot on target and completing only eight passes in a quiet showing against Saliba and Gabriel.

What's next?

Arsenal have the upcoming international break to prepare for the visit of Tottenham on October 1, when Brentford visit Bournemouth.

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