Eddie Nketiah scored his first Premier League hat-trick as Arsenal defeated bottom-placed Sheffield United to pull within two points of leaders Tottenham.
The 24-year-old former Chelsea youth player started the score in the 28th minute of play, then doubled Arsenal’s advantage 22 minutes later before completing a trifecta in 58 minutes to increase his league goal tally to five.
Fabio Vieira scored a late penalty when the visual assistance referee (VAR) ruled Oliver Norwood fouled him inside the penalty area.
In stoppage time, Takehiro Tomiyasu got on the end of a Mohamed Elneny flick and prodded home from a corner.
This is the first English Premier League goal for Tomiyasu, congratulations to him.
Mikel Arteta, the Gunners’ manager, made five changes for the Blades’ visit, and it was Nketiah, who came in for the injured Gabriel Jesus, who made the difference and concluded a spectacular day wearing the captain’s armband.
During the second half, Arteta rested a few players, including Ben White and Gabriel Martinelli, while Gabriel Magalhaes was another omission from the starting lineup.
Substitutes On a day when Arsenal’s periphery players grabbed center stage, Fabio Vieira and Takehiro Tomiyasu sealed the points late with a penalty and a close-range finish.
The most noticeable of Arteta’s changes saw Martin Odegaard slide to the bench, while Emile Smith Rowe made his first league start since May 2022.
Arsenal moved into second position, two points behind leaders and north London rivals Tottenham, with Arteta’s side remaining unbeaten after 10 league games.
Arsenal will now look to win at West Ham in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday, while the Blades will try to pick up their first Premier League win of the season at home to Wolves next Saturday.