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Wenger delighted for centurion Giroud

Wenger delighted for centurion Giroud

The forgotten man then lofted a cross centrally to Walcott and after his initial header was palmed out by Denis Scherbitski, the former England worldwide was on hand to stab the rebound home.

An error from BATE goalkeeper Denis Shcherbitski handed Walcott his second, capitalising on a woeful clearance before drilling into the bottom left corner from 12 yards. It was a awful error from the BATE keeper and it was punished accordingly. After 26 minutes, Arsenal were cruising.

Players often say things like they are only playing for the team and not interested in personal glory, but who really believes all that twaddle?

Three minutes later and the Gunners had a third, with Holding diverting Per Mertesacker's header into the net from a corner, but the home side hit back nearly immediately as Ivanic powered Aleksey Rios' cross beyond Ospina at the near post. This was before Holding converted from close range to make it 3-0 to the Gunners.

Arsenal now have six points from six. The Gunners were awarded a rather dubious penalty which was supposedly given for holding in the box.

But Walcott opted against taking the spot kick, allowing Giroud to step up for what was his 100th goal for the North Londoners.

MAXIM MALINOVSKY  GettyImages
MAXIM MALINOVSKY GettyImages

In becoming the 19th Arsenal player to reach the milestone, Giroud also achieved it in quicker time than both Dennis Bergkamp and Robin van Persie.

BATE got their second goal in the 67th minute after comical defending from Arsenal who failed to clear their lines.

When Rob Holding scored his first goal for the club three minutes later, a rout seemed on the cards in Belarus. "He has shown that tonight", Wenger told the club's website (www.arsenal.com).

He was omitted from the latest England squad despite a shortage of options in midfield, but having impressed after becoming peripheral at Arsenal, Wilshere was asked if he felt his past had been forgotten, and he said: "Yeah, but that is football".

Do you expect Giroud to now go on a scoring streak for Arsenal?

In the other Europa League tie involving an English club, Everton were booed off the field at Goodison Park after they were held to a 2-2 draw by Cypriot minnows Apollon Limassol.




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