In a freezing night at The Emirates, Arsenal secured their place in the last 16 of the Champions League by overwhelming RC Lens with an impressive 6-0 victory. The win also ensured their top position in Group B, sealing their qualification.
Speaking to reporters after the remarkable win, Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta expressed his satisfaction with the team’s performance, stating, “Today we were really attacking and we played to dominate the game – and we achieved that… Today we were really effective.”
The match witnessed an outstanding display from Arsenal, with six different players contributing to the goal tally. Kai Havertz opened the scoring in the 13th minute, capitalising on Lens’ defensive error, followed by goals from Gabriel Jesus, Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli, Martin Odegaard, and a late penalty converted by Jorginho.
Lens, currently sitting third in the group with five points, faced a disheartening defeat and is now unable to advance to the knockout stage.
The victory was particularly satisfying for Arsenal, marking their return to the Champions League after seven years. The team’s commanding performance reflected their determination to excel in European football’s premier club competition.
Lens, who had previously secured a 2-1 victory against Arsenal in the reverse fixture, found themselves unable to replicate their earlier success. Despite flashes of frustration among Lens’ supporters, Arsenal maintained control throughout the game.
Declan Rice’s solid defensive display in the second half ensured Lens struggled to make any significant incursions into Arsenal’s territory. The match concluded on a sour note for Lens when a late VAR-reviewed penalty allowed Arsenal’s substitute, Jorginho, to further extend the lead, completing a dismal outing for the visiting side.