Benfica 1-1 Arsenal: Saka scores key Europa League away goal in Rome

Luis Pizzi had put Benfica ahead from the penalty spot following a handball against Emile Smith Rowe after 55 minutrs, but Saka levelled just two minutes later to hand Mikel Arteta’s Gunners the advantage in their round-of-32 tie.

Pierre-Emerick missed gilt-edged chances in either half – a sitter in the first half a particularly harrowing miss for the Arsenal captain – but Saka’s goal means the Gunners will head into the second leg of their knockout tie with the advantage of an away goal.

The Gunners were on top for much of the first leg, with Martin Odegaard pulling the strings in a playmaker role behind Aubameyang.

Arteta’s side looked like they’d had the wind knocked out of their sails after Benfica scored from the spot, but Saka’s strike soon after was a just reward for their overall performance in the Italian capital.

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