Arsenal win, Man Utd lose in Europa League

·3-min read

Brazilian teenager Marquinhos has marked his Arsenal debut by scoring the first goal and setting up a second in a 2-1 victory over Zurich in their opening group stage match of the Europa League.

Eddie Nketiah scored the winner on Thursday after Zurich equalised from a penalty awarded due to his foul as Arsenal rebounded from Sunday's 3-1 loss to Manchester United - their first defeat in the Premier League this season.

The Red Devils, however, opened their campaign with defeat to Real Sociedad at a packed Old Trafford.

Real Sociedad took a 59th-minute lead as Brais Mendez converted a penalty following a contentious handball decision against half-time introduction Lisandro Martinez.

It proved the deciding goal of this Group E opener as Erik ten Hag's side saw their four-game winning run come to an end.

It was the Red Devils' first Europa League match since losing the 2021 final against Villarreal and saw Cristiano Ronaldo make just his third appearance in the competition.

Play got off to a scrappy start on a strange night in Manchester, where Ronaldo was quickly closed down as he looked to score his first of the season.

Antony saw a curling effort saved as play trundled along, with Mendez striking wide before United's star name thought he had scored.

Ronaldo met a 35th minute Diogo Dalot cross with a header that goalkeeper Alejandro Remiro could only tip onto the underside of the bar and in, only for the offside flag to cut celebrations short.

United introduced Bruno Fernandes and Martinez at the break, with the latter throwing himself at Manchester City great David Silva's shot from the resulting corner, with the ball ricocheting off his leg and onto his arm.

Referee Marco Di Bello pointed to the spot and booked the defender. VAR Massimiliano Irrati ratified the decision and Mendez drilled the penalty out of David De Gea's reach.

Roma opened their campaign with a 2-1 defeat at Ludogorets in Bulgaria, while in the third-tier Europa Conference League, Villarreal beat Lech Poznan 4-3 and Fiorentina were held 1-1 at home by Latvian champions RFS.

The duo of Nketiah and Marquinhos were involved in the decisive moments of Arsenal's victory in Switzerland while United States goalkeeper Matt Turner made his debut for the Gunners following his summer transfer from the New England Revolution in the MLS.

Nketiah found the back of the net with a header in the second half that went in between the legs of Zurich goalkeeper Yanick Brecher off a cross from Marquinhos, who joined Arsenal this summer from Sao Paulo.

In the London club's return to European soccer after a one-year absence, the 19-year-old Marquinhos met a cross from Nketiah from the left to side-foot into the top corner and finish off a fluent counter-attack 16 minutes into the game.

Despite Arsenal's dominance, the hosts equalised a minute before halftime after Mirlind Kryeziu sent Turner the wrong way from the spot.

In the same Group A, PSV Eindhoven drew Bodo/Glimt 1-1.

Brazilian forward Nonato scored the late winner winner for the Bulgarian club Ludogorets.

Michy Batshuayi came off the bench to give Fenerbahce a 2-1 home win over Dynamo Kyiv.

Willian Jose converted a penalty in first-half stoppage time and added another later for Real Betis in their 2-0 victory at Helsinki.