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The 2021-22 English Premier League season kicks off today with newly promoted Brentford against Arsenal at Brentford Community Stadium.

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Team News

Brentford have two debutants today with Frank Onyeka and Kristoffer Ajer for the newly promoted side. The Brentford starting eleven has a combined three appearances in the EPL before tonights game; Ivan Toney (2) and Sergi Canós.

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Arsenal have three players making their debut for the Gunners tonight, with Ben White and Albert Sambi Lokonga as new signings and Folarin Balogun from the Arsenal academy. The Gunners are missing their main goalscorer in recent years in Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang through illness.

Player to watch

Ivan Toney

Ivan Toney was Brentford’s top goalscorer last season, breaking the record for the most amount of goals in a season in the Championship (31 goals). Toney has two appearances as a substitute in the EPL for Newcastle United back in the 2015/16 season. If Brentford have any chance of not getting relegated this season, Toney will need to score a lot of goals this season.

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Nicolas Pépé

With Lacazette and Aubameyang not playing due to illness, Nicolas Pépé is going to have to perform tonight. Last season Pépé was able to score 16 goals in all competitions which was more than Aubameyang and one less than Lacazette. Since Pépé has joined Arsenal, he hasn’t performed to the level that would have been expected of him, so tonight is a huge one for Pépé as he needs to get off to good start to the season.

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Kick off is fast approaching in the Brentford Community Stadium and the start of the 2021/22 EPL season.

Both sides are now coming out as for the first time this season and the first time win the EPL for Brentford.

KICK OFF: Arsenal has started tonight’s game as well as the start to the EPL season.

2nd min: First shot in the game goes to Arsenal as Kiernan Tierney tries a long shot which David Raya easily catches.

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First time a stadium is at full capacity in the EPL since March 2020

5th min: Brentford will be happy with the start of the game not giving Arsenal any easy chances and looking to put the Arsenal defence under a lot of pressure.

10th min: Brentford’s first team minutes in the EPL and their blueprint is already showing looking to play out the back and when out of possession look to press Arsenal high.

12th min: BRENTFORD HIT THE POST! Bryan Mbeumo hits the post for Brentford has they have their first chance in tonights game. The ball struck the outside of the post and goes out for a goal kick. Arsenal will need step up if they are going to get anything from this game.

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15th min: Arsenal won’t be happy with how they have started tonight’s game as Brentford have created the best chance.

18th min: Slow start to the EPL season so far as both teams are struggling to create chance since Mbeumo hit the post for Brentford

22nd min: GOAL FOR BRENTFORD: Canos scores Brentford’s first goal in EPL. David Raya put the ball in the penalty area and Arsenal couldn’t clear their lines as the ball fell to the Spaniard and unleash a powerful shot that beat Bernd Leno at his near post. As things stand Brentford are on top of the EPL.

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25th min: Brentford are in dreamland at the moment beating three times Premier League champions Arsenal.

28th min: Touching tribute from the Brentford fans paying tribute to Robert Rowan who was a former technical director at Brentford who died at the age of 28 in 2018.

30th min: Mbeumo had a huge chance for Brentford after wriggling his way past Ben White but couldn’t but get his shot on target.

34th min: Pépé is starting to get onto the ball as he gets off his first shot in the game. Terrible effort but at least he is contributing in the game for Arsenal. Not been a good start for the Gunners.

38th min: Folarin Balogun gets a shot off for Arsenal but again was why off target. Sums up the half so far for the Gunners.

41st min: Only a few minutes left in the first half and the Bees will be delighted with things have gone. They haven’t given away any clear cut chances while constantly looking dangerous.

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1 MINUTE OF ADDED TIME!

HALF TIME: Brentford’s first 45 minutes of Premier League football couldn’t have gone much better as they lead Arsenal 1-0 thanks to a goal from Canos. Arsenal fans will not want to see that half of football again as they were terrible. They looked sloppy in defence and their only attacking threat seems to be Tierney.

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Scenes from the Brentford Community Stadium after Cano’s goal.

Second half coming up shortly.

BRENTFORD KICKS OFF THE SECOND HALF!

48th min: Arsenal started with a bit of urgency in the second half as they are trying to get back into this game.

51st min: Arsenal’s first real chance in the game from Emile Smith-Rowe as he cut through the Brentford midfield and got a shot off but was straight at Raya, who saved the shot well.

55th min: First ten minutes in the second half and Arsenal are pressing further forward as Brentford are now constantly defending their 18 yard box.

SUBSTITUTION FOR ARSENAL: Folarin Balogun is off for Bukayo Saka who receives a standing ovation from both sets of fans as he enters the pitch.


60th min: Arsenal only have 30 mins left to get back into this game and get something from their opening game in the season.

64th min: Tierney has an effort that took a slight deflection and almost beats Raya in the Brentford goal as it hits the side netting and goes out for a corner.

66th min: Canos almost scored again but his effort this time was beaten away by Leno.

70th min: Granit Xhaka has an effort at the edge of the area with a half volley which went over the bar. Arsenal are starting to knock on the door of the Brentford defence.

71st min: SUBSTITUTION FOR ARSENAL: Gabriel Martinelli is off for Reiss Nelson.

SUBSTITUTION FOR BRENTFORD: Kristoffer Ajer off for Mads Bech Sørensen.

73rd min: GOAL FOR BRENTFORD! Christian Nørgaard doubles Brentford’s lead. Arsenal couldn’t deal with a long throw in and Nørgaard is able to head the ball in the empty net.

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75th min: 15 minutes left in Brentford’s first ever EPL has they lead Arsenal 2-0.

80th min: SUBSTITUTION FOR BRENTFORD. Frank Onyeka off for Mads Bidstrup.

81st min: Nørgaard almost scores again from a corner as the ball is inches wide of the goal.

82nd min: SUBSTITUTION FOR ARSENAL. Callum Chambers is off for Nuno Tavares for his Arsenal debut.

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86th min: Xhaka has a shot from the edge of the area and goes wide of the goal. Sums up Arsenal’s performance tonight.

87th min: SUBSTITUTION FOR BRENTFORD. Mbeumo on for Marcus Foss.

87th min: GREAT SAVE FROM RAYA! Great save from the Brentford keeper as Tierney done well to find Pépé who’s effort was well saved by Raya down to his right.

FIVE MINUTES OF ADDED TIME

FULL TIME: Brentford win their opening game in their first ever EPL season against Arsenal thanks to goals from Canos and Nørgaard. Brilliant night for the Brentford fans as this game was 72 years in the making.

Arsenal will be disappointed with tonight as their team was terrible. Tierney was the only player that really showed up for Arsenal. Tough first night with an Arsenal shirt for White who couldn’t handle the the Brentford forwards.

Tonight’s MOTM goes to Mbeumo who couldn’t find the net but was a constant thorn in the Arsenal defence and caused them problems all night. Next for Brentford is Crystal Palace away, while Arsenal has the European champions Chelsea next weekend.

That’s it for tonight, see you next time.

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