Europa League: Lacazette Double Gives Arsenal Comfortable First-Leg Win Over Valencia

Alexandre Lacazette scored twice as Arsenal came from behind at Emirates Stadium to win the first leg of their Europa League semi-final against Valencia.

Mouctar Diakhaby‘s header put Valencia in front before Lacazette slotted in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang‘s pass.

Seven minutes later, Arsenal led as terrible defending allowed Lacazette a free header from Granit Xhaka‘s cross and a weak hand from Neto could not prevent the ball crossing the line.

The chances continued to come for Arsenal’s front two as Aubameyang volleyed into the ground and over just before the break.

Lacazette then had two glorious opportunities to complete his hat-trick as he firstly failed to connect with an inch-perfect Aubameyang cross before Neto made a brilliant save at his near post to keep the Spanish side in the tie.

At the other end Petr Cech also had to make a smart stop as he raced from his goal to deny substitute Kevin Gameiro.

The veteran stopper has announced he will retire at the end of the season.

But Arsenal will travel to Valencia for the second leg next Thursday, hoping to avoid a second successive semi-final defeat after they were knocked out by eventual winners Atletico Madrid last year.

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