Vitoria 1-1 Arsenal: Lacklustre Gunners held to Europa League draw


A lacklustre Arsenal were held to a 1-1 draw by Vitoria in the Europa League on Wednesday after Bruno Duarte scored a 91st-minute equaliser.

It was the perfect revenge for Vitoria, who were beaten by a 94th-minute Nicolas Pepe free-kick at the Emirates two weeks ago, as they claimed a deserved point – their first of the current campaign – when Duarte acrobatically found the net.

Arsenal had failed to have an effort on target until the 80th minute when Shkodran Mustafi nodded home from another Nicolas Pepe free-kick to put the visitors ahead, but, until that moment, Unai Emery’s side had looked devoid of any attacking intent.

Despite a below-par performance in Portugal, Arsenal remain top of Group F on 10 points and can qualify for the last 32 on Thursday if second-placed Eintracht Frankfurt beat third-placed Standard Liege. Despite the point, Vitoria remain bottom of the group and can no longer qualify for the knockout stages.

Vitoria made a strong start at the Estadio D. Alfonso Henriques. Inside eight minutes, Pepe produced a thunderous strike from 25 yards which had Emiliano Martinez stretching, but it crashed onto the post before going wide. The Arsenal goalkeeper then made two wonderful saves, getting a strong hand to Marcus Edwards’ effort before pushing away a flicked header from Edmond Tapsoba.


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