Mikel Areta’s men strung together an impressive number of passes in setting up the Cote d’Ivoire international for their second goal
Arsenal set this season’s Premier League passing record as they strung together 19 passes to set up Nicolas Pepe for the Gunners’ second goal of the afternoon against Sheffield United on Sunday.
Pepe had replaced Anglo-Ghanaian Eddie Nketiah in the 58th minute in the 2-1 triumph at the Emirates Stadium.
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) October 4, 2020
Hector Bellerin provided the assist as Mikel Arteta’s men covered the vast majority of the pitch with a flowing move before the Cote d’Ivoire international placed a fine low finish beyond Aaron Ramsdale.
The goal is the 25-year-old’s first English top flight strike of the 2020-21 season, and his first since he scored in the club’s 2-1 defeat against Brighton and Hove Albion on June 20.
Bukayo Saka had given the hosts the lead just after the hour mark to mark his first England call-up this week, after finishing off a slick passing move by heading home Bellerin’s cross from the right into the top corner at the back post.
Six minutes before full time, David McGoldrick curled home from 20 yards out to set up a tense finale, but the Blades were denied all three points.
Manager Arteta had revealed that the best of the forward, who joined the North London outfit from Lille for a fee worth £72 million ($92m) is still to come.
“I think Nico has come a long way,” said the Spaniard. “Obviously we know what the club paid for him when he joined and that was an extra pressure.
“But he is a player who had to adapt. It is a different style and he has a really good attitude and we can see big developments in a lot of places in his game.
“He is very settled here, he is liked by the boys, he is a really good character to have around and I’m really positive we are going to have him for many years and that he can perform at a really high level consistently.”
Thanks to this result, the Gunners are fourth in the English top flight log having accrued nine points from nine games.
They face cross-city rivals Manchester City in their next game on October 17 at the Etihad Stadium.