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Saka and Smith Rowe give glimmer of joy during turgid Arsenal season

N

ot for the first time this season, Arsenal’s youngsters were a rare bright spark during this win over West Brom.

Certainly beating West Brom, and relegating them, wasn’t going to heal any wounds given that the Gunners have nothing left to play for.

If there was a small crumble of comfort to take from this 3-1 win, though, it was the performance of Arsenal’s youngsters.

It has been a miserable season at the Emirates, but the rise of Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe have spread some joy.

They have stepped up to the plate when others haven’t, and it was fitting that they created the opening goal here.

Saka, who was playing at full-back, got in down the left and he was able to pick out Smith Rowe with a lovely cross. The finish was equally accurate and set Arsenal on their way to all three points.

A wonder strike from Nicolas Pepe, and a stunning late free-kick from Willian, wrapped up the win on what was otherwise a rather tame affair.

West Brom may have been fighting for their lives, and they tried to throw a few punches, but whenever Arsenal vaguely clicked into gear it was clear they had too much.

Arsenal remain ninth in the Premier League after the win, with the season meandering to a quiet end for them, but at least the youngsters are here to hopefully provide some excitement.

AP

Saka gives Southgate a timely reminder of versatility


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