France international Alexandre Lacazette made his return to the Chelsea game in the Premier League on Wednesday after recovering from Covid-19. The virus forced the France strik.er to miss the 1-0 loss at Southampton on Saturday as Arsenal made it three straight losses in the league with Polish defender Jan Bednarek getting the all-important goal just before the end of the first half.
Lacazette returned to training on Tuesday after recovering from Covid-19 and he was only good enough for the bench as Arteta gave England junior international Eddie Nketiah only his second start against hosts and London rivals Chelsea in the league.
Nketiah had been on the fringes of the Arsenal first team this season especially in the league. He was given his first start in the Premier League this season following the absence of France international Lacazette against the Saints, but he was unable to prevent the Gunners from suffering a slim defeat.
Arteta kept faith with Nketiah in his starting line-up for the Chelsea game and he was rewarded with two goals against the European champions either side of the break. His two goals propelled Arsenal to a morale-boosting 4-2 win at Chelsea thereby ending a run of defeats over the course of three straight matches in the league. Nketiah scored the first of his two goals in the 13th minute to give Arsenal the lead when he pounced on a loose ball to find the back of the net. The lead lasted for four minutes before Timo Werner levelled proceedings for the home team. Arsenal went ahead again through joint leading goalscorer Emile Smith-Rowe on 27 minutes and the lead didn’t last long before Cesar Azpilicueta scored a second equaliser for the European champions. Nketiah scored again in the second half before Bukayo Saka wrapped up the win with his penalty in added time. France international Lacazette came on for a cameo appearance in the place of Saka as he made his return to the pitch after Covid-19.