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  • By Alessandro Schiavone in Nurnberg

Jesus nets hat-trick on debut for Arsenal in 5-3 win at Nurnberg



By Alessandro Schiavone in Nurnberg


FC NURNBERG 3-5 ARSENAL

Gabriel Jesus marked his Arsenal debut with a terrific hat-trick as the Gunners stormed back from two goals down to seal a 5-3 win at Nurnberg, Germany, this afternoon.


After coming on at half-time, Brazil ace Jesus pulled one back for his new club with his first touch in an Arsenal shirt before his fine header completed the turnaround. In between, a Mohamed Elneny screamer had levelled the encounter for Arsenal in what turned out to be a game of two halves. An own-goal by the hapless Tim Handwerker followed by Jesus’s third of the afternoon rubbed further salt into manager Robert Klauss’s side.


Nurnberg raced into a comfortable 2-0 first-half lead against the passive and conservative north Londoners thanks to goals by Johannes Geus and Kwadwo Duah.


If anyone expected a mismatch between Arsenal who finished fifth in the Premier League and Germany’s 28th-placed side, they were prophetic. Just that it was Nurnberg who looked like the dominant side.


In fact, the first half saw the Bavarians dictate tempo, control the game and race into a shock 2-0 lead that even their fans couldn’t believe.


For the fallen former Bundesligisten, once dispatched the mighty Bayern Munich 3-0 on this patch, this was the game of their year. The presence of superstars in the city has become a rarity and thus the arrival of ex-Manchester City superstar Jesus was heavily anticipated.


But with Jesus having to bide his time on the bench, they couldn’t have asked for more accommodating opponents.


Mikel Arteta fielded a second-string Gunners side with at least six players in it that he will be desperate to move on before the window shuts in 54 days.


And his flops’ questionable body language, lack of game plan and togetherness saw Nurnberg storm to a 2-0 lead.


The game was only two minutes old when Christoph Daferner fluffed Lino Tempelmann’s inviting cross, heading just wide.


Twelve minutes later, the Gooners gave their first signs of life when England international Emile Smith-Rowe saw his bending effort palmed away by Christian Mathenia.


But this slow burner burst into life when Geis hammered a left footer in off the crossbar from 21 yards out. It was a keeper-assisted goal and the American Matt Turner knows he should have done better to thwart the floating yet central strike.


The 2007 German Cup winners then took a commanding first-half lead when Kwadwo Duah arrowed a diagonal effort beyond the palms of Turner after cantering forward on his own.


So, could Arsenal get their mojo back after the interval after a sloppy first 45 minutes?


Yes, they did just that following the introduction of serial winner Jesus.


And whatever Arteta told his men at half-time, it worked.


Jesus scored with the first touch, two minutes after the restart.


Minutes later Duah missed a glaring opportunity to restore a two-goal lead when he scuffed a volley wide. And that missed chance came back to haunt the hosts who went from a potential 3-1 lead to Arsenal’s equaliser in the matter of seconds.


And when Elneny blasted a majestic first-time effort into the back of the net to level the game, the writing was on the wall.


Jesus completed the remuntada with a well-taken header from Martinelli’s cross after Handwerker bundled the ball into his own net.


Substitute Luke Schleimer’s volley through the middle in the crowded box gave Nurnberg’s 21,000 supporters at least a reason to smile in a dreadful second period.


But it was too little too late as Arsenal held on to make it a debut to remember for their new superstar Jesus.


Line-ups

FC Nurnberg

26 Christian Mathenia- 4 Asger Sorensen- 5 Johannes Geis- 6 Lino Tempelmann- 10 Mats Moller-Daehli- 15 Fabian Nurnberger- 16 Christopher Schindler- 24 Kwadwo Duah- Jan Gyamera— 29 Tim Handwerker- 33 Christoph Daferner


Arsenal

30 Matt Turner- 2 Hector Bellerin- 3 Kieran Tierney- 10 Emile Smith-Rowe- 14 Eddie Nketiah- 15 Ainsley Maitland-Niles- 19 Nicolas Pepe- 22 Pablo Mari- 23 Sambi Lokonga- 24 Reiss Nelson- 97 Revell Walters






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