Sporting CP vs Arsenal: 3 things learned | UEFA Europa League 2018-19
Arsenal made it 11 consecutive wins in all competitions, thanks to a 0-1 away win at Sporting CP. This was Arsenal's first away win in Portugal in their last 6 visits there, drawing 3 and losing 3. So The Gunners needed to right the wrongs of the past .
Here are 3 things we noticed from the game.
#1 Emery's improvement of the players
With the likes of Nacho Monreal and Sead Kolasinac out due to minor hamstring complaints, Granit Xhaka was given the responsibility of filling in at left back.
After a short cameo in that position during the closing stages of Monday’s win against Leicester City, this potentially was a much more challenging test for him, coming up against former Manchester United winger, Nani, but he performed well in an unfamiliar position.
He may not be a long-term option as a left back, but the fact he was used there clearly shows he has been learning the trade of being a left back in training sessions.
If his performance on Monday against Leicester City was encouraging, this one against Sporting CP was much more encouraging.
Most notably, Granit Xhaka has been a much improved player, especially since the inclusion of Lucas Torreira, so this is another plus to Emery and Arsenal.
#2 Welbeck's finishing and positivity have improved
Arsenal's forward line has been impressive this season. The likes of Mesut Ozil, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and Alexandre Lacazette have dominated the headlines, leaving the England international a bit under the radar.
Danny Welbeck has netted an impressive 5 goals in 10 appearances for The Gunners this season. The former Man Utd forward has also been a more positive player when going forward, and his strike against Sporting was well-taken with aplomb.