|Gabriel Jesus celebrates after powering Arsenal past Sevilla in the Champions League on Tuesday night. Arsenal won 2-1. (Photo credit: Sporting News)|
Arsenal and Manchester United found different ways to see their respective opponents in the Champions League on Tuesday, but the Red Devils still have lots of work to do.
Manchester United hosted Danish champions Copenhagen at the Old Trafford Stadium, and once again, the task before them was clear: only a win would keep their Champions League hopes alive after losing the first two games to Bayern Munich and Galatasaray, respectively.
Sergio Reguilon made it into the starting eleven for the first time since his injury, but the first half was drab, and the home fans were already agitated. Christian Eriksen replaced Sofyan Amrabat at the start of the second half, and the midfield ticked.
The Dane’s cross in the 72nd minute was met by Harry Maguire, and the former club captain obliged with a fine finish. It was going to go south at the death when Scott McTominay conceded a penalty, but Andre Onana saved to help United to their first three points of the campaign.
Arsenal lost their second group game at Lens, and that made the game away at Sevilla an important game for the Gunners to win. Takehiro Tomiyasu started in place of Alex Zinchenko, and the trio of Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli, and Gabriel Jesus all returned in attack.
The Gunners dominated proceedings against the hosts but couldn’t find the breakthrough. Martinelli found himself through on goal midway through the first half, but the Brazilian shot straight at the goalkeeper to leave the fans frustrated.
Martinelli made up for the miss late in the first half. Gabriel Jesus set him on the way off a feisty counterattack, and Martinelli stayed composed, danced around the goalkeeper, and slotted home before Sergio Ramos could do anything about it.
Arsenal started the second half brightly. Gabriel Jesus found himself unbelievably free at the end of the Sevilla box, and from an improbable angle, the Brazilian striker curled one in to make it 2-0 to the visitors on the night.
Sevilla pulled one back midway into the second half to make it a frenetic affair. Ivan Rakitic’s corner was met by Nicolas Gudelj’s header, and David Raya couldn’t do anything about it. The Arsenal keeper was also suspect at some points, but he managed to see the game through.
Mariano Diaz struck the woodwork, but the flag would have restricted his celebrations, with the Real Madrid loanee appearing to have controlled the ball with his hand. Arsenal moved to the top of the table with six points and will host Sevilla in a return leg next week.