Europa League: Alexandre Lacazette leads Arsenal to 1-0 win over FK Qarabag
Alexandre Lacazette’s first-half strike was the difference as Arsenal beat FK Qarabag 1-0 to top Group E in the Europa League on Thursday.
The home victory helped Arsenal, who had club captain Laurent Koscielny return from a torn Achilles tendon, finish the group stage unbeaten and on top of the standings.
Frenchman Lacazette fired a low strike past Qarabag goalkeeper Vagner da Silva for the game’s only goal in the 16th minute.
Arsenal, who also had Mesut Ozil return from injury, should have added another late into the game but youngster Bukayo Saka’s close-range effort was kept out by Vagner.
Portugal side Sporting CP claimed the second place with a crushing 3-0 victory over Vorskla, while Qarabag with just one victory finished last in the standings.
Meanwhile, five Eintracht Frankfurt fans were arrested following a clash with the police before their Group H match against Lazio.
Eintracht, who finished on top of Group H overcame the Italian side 2-1 in what was a tough encounter. But the match was overshadowed by the violence that preceded and followed it.
Joaquin Correa had given Lazio the lead in the 56th-minute following which a section of fans from the German team invaded the pitch and subsequently threw smoke bombs and flares at the home team’s players as well as the police, who tried to stop them.
Greek team Olympiacos knocked AC Milan out of the competition with a thrashing 3-1 victory against the former Italy champions.
Milan needed just a draw to qualify for the knockout stage, while a win would have seen them top Group F but the defeat – their second in the group stage – knocked Milan out of the competition. Real Betis topped the standings with 12 points from six matches.