Bournemouth 0-3 Arsenal: Fine William Saliba goal and two from Martin Odegaard continue Gunners’ perfect start to the season

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Mikel Arteta played down Arsenal’s position at the top of the Premier League table but admitted he was “proud” after his side produced another impressive display in a 3-0 win at Bournemouth, with William Saliba’s stunner the pick of the goals.

Captain Martin Odegaard also scored twice as Arsenal made it three wins from three this season, although Arteta was reluctant to get carried away with his team’s fast start.

“I’m proud because it’s not easy to come here and win 3-0 but there is still things to improve,” he said.

“It’s just three games, it doesn’t mean anything. What it means is the team is playing really well, we won three games, we’re scoring goals, we’re keeping clean sheets, the team is playing and performing well, it’s competing really well.”

Odegaard tapped in his first (5) after excellent work from star new signing Gabriel Jesus led to Gabriel Martinelli’s shot being parried, and the Norwegian hammered in a second (11) when Jesus’ heavy touch in the box teed him up.

But it was centre-back Saliba who stole the headlines with a sumptuous strike in the second half. The Frenchman scored an own goal last weekend against Leicester but more than made up for that with a wonderful, curling effort which went in off the underside of the bar (54).

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William Saliba curls in a fine finish to score his first Arsenal goal and put them 3-0 up away at Bournemouth.

After waiting three seasons for his Arsenal first-team opportunity, the 21-year-old celebrated his first goal for the club in style.

Arteta had named the same Arsenal XI for the third match in a row and was rewarded with another extremely encouraging performance, with Jesus unplayable early on and denied a third goal of the season by a marginal VAR offside call.

Arsenal lost their first three matches last season but their perfect start to this campaign has them above north London rivals Tottenham in the table, with Man City – who also have a 100 per cent record – playing at Newcastle, live on Sky Sports on Super Sunday.

As for out-classed Bournemouth, they sit 14th after suffering during another tough assignment, having lost at City last time out. It doesn’t get any easier for Scott Parker’s side – they go to Liverpool next in the Premier League.

Player ratings

Bournemouth: Travers (6), Kelly (5), Mepham (5), Senesi (3), Smith (6), Lerma (5), Pearson (3), Billing (5), Zemura (5), Tavernier (5), Moore (6)

Subs: Cook (6), Christie (6), Anthony (6)

Arsenal: Ramsdale (6), White (7), Saliba (8), Gabriel (8), Zinchenko (8), Partey (7), Xhaka (8), Saka (7), Odegaard (8), Martinelli (7), Jesus (8)

Subs: Tomiyasu (6), Nketiah (6), Smith Rowe (6), Tierney (N/A), Lokonga (N/A)

Man of the Match: Gabriel Jesus (Arsenal)

How Arsenal made it three on the spin

Jesus scored two and set up two in the 4-2 win over Leicester last time out and the brilliant Brazilian – named man of the match again – played a part in both of Arsenal’s opening goals on Saturday evening as Odegaard recorded his first top-flight brace since October 2014 when he was playing in Norway and just 15.

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Martin Odegaard is on hand to give Arsenal an early lead at Bournemouth after excellent work by Gabriel Jesus in the build-up.

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Arsenal captain Martin Odegaard lashes in his second of the game to put his team 2-0 up at Bournemouth with just 11 minutes played.

Strangely, there were no more shots on target after that from the visitors in the first half but their dominance in the opening 45 was near-total, with Bournemouth unable to get an effort away at all.

Team news

  • Bournemouth made three changes from their defeat at Man City, with Marcos Senesi making his full debut, and Jordan Zemura and Philip Billing dropping out. Lerma moved back to midfield, with Lewis Cook, Ryan Christie and Jack Stacey coming out of the team.
  • Arsenal remained unchanged for a third Premier League game in a row.

“It’s not often you see the gap in class between two teams in the Premier League as wide as this,” said Sky Sports pundit Alan Smith as his former side showed their authority.

Bournemouth’s Marcos Senesi – making his full debut – had been out-fought by Jesus in the build-up to the first goal and Ben Pearson lost Odegaard for the second and both were hooked at half time, with Lewis Cook and Jaidon Anthony sent on – but the changes ultimately made little impact to the course of the game.

Arsenal win three in a row

It has been 18 years since Arsenal won their first three Premier League games, when they went on to finish as runners-up to Chelsea in 2004-05

Instead, the standout intervention in the second period was Saliba’s strike from Xhaka’s lay-off, a moment to savour for the travelling Arsenal supporters who had sung the young defender’s name throughout.

Those fans celebrated what they thought was a fourth when Jesus tucked in after an excellent through ball from Odegaard with 20 minutes to play but VAR intervened, with replays showing it to be a marginal call.

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Gabriel Jesus thought he had put Arsenal 4-0 up away at Bournemouth, only for VAR to rule that he was marginally offside in the build-up.

Kieffer Moore eventually tested former Cherries ‘keeper Aaron Ramsdale with a header soon after that but Jesus and sub Eddie Nketiah were denied by Mark Travers at the other end in the final moments as Arsenal finished on top.

Ton up for Saka

At 20 years and 349 days, Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka became the youngest player to reach 100 Premier League appearances since Raheem Sterling in September 2015 (20 years 285 days).

The verdict on Saliba’s stunner

Image: William Saliba scores Arsenal’s third goal of the game

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta:

“For sure that was the last thing I would expect [from him] but credit to the boy for the way he is playing, performing and the goal he scored today.”

Saliba achieves 100% pass completion

William Saliba completed all 76 of his pass attempts against Bournemouth; the most passes by an Arsenal defender with a 100% completion rate in a Premier League match (since 2003-04, when this data is available).

Sky Sports’ Alan Smith:

“If the fans loved him before, they absolutely worship him now! He’s such an elegant player – and that’s how he finishes this. Like a top class centre forward! He got an own goal last week but this more than makes up for it.”

Sky Sports’ Jamie Redknapp:

“He looks like a Rolls-Royce. Going away, learning the game in France, he’s come back to Arsenal and looks like a man now. That has given him so much strength, he’s getting confidence, he’s got that aura about him. Defensively they look so much better.”

Player of the match: Gabriel Jesus

Sky Sports’ Alan Smith:

“Odegaard could easily have got it. But a bit of bias as a No9 myself – it has to be Jesus. The part he played in that first goal, he deserved to be player of the match. And everything he has done since has been excellent. He was unlucky not to get on the scoresheet but what an addition to the team Jesus has been and will be.”

Arteta: Room for improvement

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta: “We had some very strong periods but in the second half we conceded too many chances for Bournemouth to put the ball in our box. I’m proud because it’s not easy to come here and win 3-0 but there is still things to improve.

“It’s just three games, it doesn’t mean anything. What it means is the team is playing really well, we won three games, we’re scoring goals, we’re keeping clean sheets, the team is playing and performing well, it’s competing really well.

“But it’s about Monday [at training] and getting better at other things that we have to do better and focus on Fulham.

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Mikel Arteta feels Arsenal’s 3-0 win over Bournemouth was far from the perfect performance and hailed Gabriel Jesus’ huge desire to continue to get better.

“Jesus didn’t score today but he was involved in the goals and his contribution to the team was outstanding. He’s still 25 years old and can still improve his level a lot. He’s got huge desire to be the best he can be and that’s what he needs to do.”

Parker: First half unacceptable

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Scott Parker described Bournemouth’s first half performance as unacceptable, criticising a lack of desire and commitment in their 3-0 loss to Arsenal.

Bournemouth boss Scott Parker: “The first half was really unacceptable from us in many ways. We needed to have a bit of humility about us in terms of understanding the dynamics of the game and what we were up against. In terms of our general body language and the general dynamics of what we needed to bring, I thought we were nowhere near it.

“There’s no disgrace in losing to Arsenal in that sense but what is not acceptable is the first half and how we went about it. Second half, there was a reaction but to come out like we did in the first half is not enough and, really, we need to understand that and the players will understand that.

“I didn’t expect to see in the first half what I saw. I expected them to show a certain ingredient that we didn’t show. It was far too easy in terms of recovery runs, getting back into shape, understanding the quality of what we’re playing against and how the game might look. There’s some big learning to do regarding this game.”

What’s next?

Saturday 27th August 5:00pm Kick off 5:30pm

Bournemouth go to Norwich in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday night in a 7.45pm kick-off before travelling to Liverpool for a 3pm kick-off on Saturday. Arsenal are back in action on Saturday Night Football when they host Fulham in a 5.30pm kick-off live on Sky Sports.

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