Welbeck treble helps Arsenal sink Galatasaray

Arsenal FC 4-1 Galatasaray AŞ
Danny Welbeck's first senior hat-trick ensured Arsène Wenger's 18th anniversary as Arsenal manager was a happy one.

• Arsène Wenger enjoys big victory on 18th anniversary as Arsenal manager
• Arsenal lead 3-0 at half-time through Danny Welbeck double and one from Alexis Sánchez
• Welbeck completes first senior hat-trick seven minutes into second half
• Wojciech Szczęsny dismissed in conceding penalty from which Burak Yılmaz makes it 4-1
Next games: Anderlecht v Arsenal, Galatasaray v Dortmund (22 October)

Arsène Wenger celebrated his 18th anniversary at the helm of Arsenal FC with a resounding victory as Danny Welbeck hit a hat-trick to propel the London side to a UEFA Champions League Group D victory against Galatasaray AŞ.

Arsenal were 3-0 up by half-time with Welbeck striking in the 22nd and 30th minutes before Alexis Sánchez added a third four minutes before the interval. Welbeck completed his treble seven minutes after the restart and though Burak Yılmaz pulled one back from the penalty spot for Galatasaray following Wojciech Szczęsny's dismissal, the result was not in doubt.

Despite a lengthy list of absentees through injury, Arsenal started brightly, with Welbeck giving an early warning with a powerful run from the halfway line, forcing Wesley Sneijder back to block his shot.

Smarting from a 2-0 loss to Borussia Dortmund on matchday one, Arsenal pressed Galatsaray and their possession paid off midway through the opening period. Kieran Gibbs passed to Sánchez on the left and he cut inside and fed a ball in behind Felipe Melo to Welbeck who stabbed in first time.

Eight minutes later it was two, the forward this time making the goal himself when he outjumped Melo to head a loose ball into his own path and then tear forward and beat Fernando Muslera with a low shot – a goal of pace, power and precision.

Galatasaray were unable to keep up and Welbeck almost had a hat-trick soon after when teed up by Mesut Özil, but fired straight at Muslera. The third goal was not long in coming, Sánchez collecting Özil's pass then turning past Aurélien Chedjou and rifling beyond Muslera.

Seven minutes into the second half and Welbeck did have his third, and his first professional hat-trick. Again he timed his run to perfection, darting in behind the Galatasaray defence to receive Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's ball then chip delicately over Muslera.

Arsenal did not have it all their own way – on 60 minutes Szczęsny was dismissed for upending Burak who promptly scored from the spot. Although Sneijder went close twice late on, this was an accomplished performance from the Gunners, who might even have had a late fifth when Santi Cazorla's attempt was cleared off the line.

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