• Arsenal 4-2 Vorskla Poltava
• Aubameyang 32 56, Welbeck 48, Özil 74
Owing to a quirk in the rules so outmoded it has been abolished, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was not allowed to play a single minute of Europa League football last season after his mid-season move from Borussia Dortmund to Arsenal. They needed him then but he needed the Europa League now. The striker has been in indifferent form so far, but a run-out against Vorskla Poltava gave him all the time and space he needed to get his mojo back.
The Europa League holds a special place in Unai Emery’s heart given he has won it twice, and although the path to the final is a long stretch, the Arsenal manager took this opening group game seriously enough to pick a strong team against a side fifth in Ukraine. Although heavily rotated from the team who won at Newcastle, Arsenal were still loaded with seasoned internationals.