Match ends, Arsenal 3, Vitória Guimarães 2.
Arsenal 3-2 Vitoria Guimaraes: Nicolas Pepe rescues Gunners in Europe
Substitute Nicolas Pepe rescued Arsenal with two sublime free-kicks in the last 10 minutes of their Europa League group game against Vitoria Guimaraes at Emirates Stadium.
Arsenal were losing 2-1 when Pepe came on in the 75th minute and he scored five minutes later with a curling effort from 25 yards.
He repeated the feat in stoppage time as Arsenal avoided their second straight defeat and retained their place at the top of Group F.
Former Tottenham youngster Marcus Edwards had earlier cut inside and fired into the bottom corner to give Vitoria a shock lead, before Arsenal's Brazilian teenager Gabriel Martinelli nodded in his fifth goal in just his third start to make it 1-1.
Bruno Duarte restored the visitors' lead on 36 minutes, pouncing on a rebound to send Arsenal into the half-time break a goal behind.
The Gunners, who were poor for large patches of the game, burst into life in the final 10 minutes as Martinelli was denied from close range before Rob Holding's header was well held by the goalkeeper.
Arsenal manager Unai Emery made 10 changes from the side that lost to Sheffield United in the Premier League on Monday but was forced to bring on Matteo Guendouzi and Dani Ceballos at half-time, before Pepe made the difference.
Pepe heroics - the start of something?
There was huge excitement this summer when Arsenal signed Ivory Coast winger Pepe from Lille for a club record fee of £72m.
He showed glimpses of brilliance against Liverpool on his first Premier League start in August and picked up an assist in the following game against Tottenham.
But the winger has been largely underwhelming and needed to make an impression from the bench in this European tie.
And that is exactly what he did, curling both set-pieces past a helpless Miguel Silva to give Arsenal another three points in the group, as they maintained their 100% record in the competition this season.
Late goals ease pressure on Emery
Former Arsenal defender Martin Keown said on BT Sport at half-time "pressure is building" on manager Emery.
Fans were booing as the players walked off at the break trailing 2-1 and banners displaying the words "Emery out" and "Unai, stop freezing Ozil out" were seen in the stands.
German midfielder Mesut Ozil was not included in the squad and has made just two appearances this season.
The defeat to Sheffield United on Monday looked set to be repeated even after Emery had ruthlessly pulled off youngsters Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Joe Willock at half-time but Pepe had other ideas.
And despite discontent, Arsenal remain fifth in the Premier League table and unbeaten in all three matches in Europe this season.
'Pepe can gain confidence' - Emery
Arsenal manger Unai Emery to BT Sport: "Our aim in this competition is to top the group. Each match is a chance to use different players and grow experience and little by little get better. We didn't play like we wanted but we showed good spirit. It's a good victory. Some players need experience and playing under pressure at this level.
"It's important for Pepe. He can gain confidence from tonight. When he scores it's good for him and the team. He's getting better, playing minutes, playing matches and scoring goals like tonight and he helped us tonight to win this match."
Man of the match - Nicolas Pepe (Arsenal)
Martinelli continues to shine - the best of the stats
- Arsenal have won seven straight home games in European competition (excluding qualifiers) for the first time since February 2002 (a run of seven in the Champions League).
- Arsenal are unbeaten in their last six home meetings with Portuguese opponents (W5, D1), scoring 20 goals and conceding just two.
- Vitoria Guimaraes are winless in their last eight away matches in the Europa League (D2, L6).
- Edwards' goal on eight minutes was the earliest Arsenal have conceded in European competition since Edinson Cavani netted after 42 seconds for PSG in September 2016.
- Edwards is the first English player to score for a non-British side against an English team in Europe since Ben Wright for Viking FK against Chelsea in September 2002 in the Uefa Cup.
- Martinelli has been directly involved in six goals in three starts for Arsenal in all competitions, scoring five and assisting one.
- Pepe is the first player to score two direct free-kicks in a Europa League game since Luis Suarez for Liverpool vs Zenit St. Petersburg in February 2013.
Arsenal are back at Emirates on Sunday when they host Crystal Palace in the Premier League (16:30 GMT).
- 20MustafiBooked at 35mins
- 28WillockSubstituted forCeballosat 45'minutes
- 15Maitland-NilesSubstituted forGuendouziat 45'minutes
- 32Smith Rowe
- 9LacazetteBooked at 74minsSubstituted forPépéat 75'minutes
- 56Macedo Silva
- 15GarcíaBooked at 58mins
- 6TapsobaBooked at 84mins
- 23EdwardsSubstituted forFerreira Coelho Pereiraat 71'minutes
- 70Ribeiro AlmeidaSubstituted forFigueiredo Rodriguesat 64'minutes
- 28PohaBooked at 60mins
- 91da Luz PereiraSubstituted forCosta Rochaat 87'minutes
- 96Duarte da Silva
- 1Renato de Jesus
- 2Pereira da Silva
- 16Costa Rocha
- 18Al Musrati
- 21Ferreira Coelho Pereira
- 88Figueiredo Rodrigues
- Serdar Gözübüyük
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Arsenal 3, Vitória Guimarães 2.
Goal! Arsenal 3, Vitória Guimarães 2. Nicolas Pépé (Arsenal) from a free kick with a left footed shot to the top left corner.
Matteo Guendouzi (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Rochinha (Vitória Guimarães).
Attempt missed. Rochinha (Vitória Guimarães) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Pepe with a headed pass.
Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Víctor García.
Substitution, Vitória Guimarães. Rochinha replaces Davidson.
Attempt saved. Rob Holding (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Nicolas Pépé with a cross.
Edmond Tapsoba (Vitória Guimarães) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Nicolas Pépé (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Edmond Tapsoba (Vitória Guimarães).
Attempt missed. Shkodran Mustafi (Arsenal) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Emile Smith Rowe with a cross following a corner.
Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Frederico Venâncio.
Attempt saved. Gabriel Martinelli (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Héctor Bellerín.
Attempt missed. Davidson (Vitória Guimarães) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Edmond Tapsoba following a fast break.
Goal! Arsenal 2, Vitória Guimarães 2. Nicolas Pépé (Arsenal) from a free kick with a left footed shot to the bottom left corner.
Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Pepe (Vitória Guimarães).
Attempt missed. Florent Hanin (Vitória Guimarães) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.
Attempt blocked. André Pereira (Vitória Guimarães) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Bruno Duarte.
Substitution, Arsenal. Nicolas Pépé replaces Alexandre Lacazette.
Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card.
Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal).
(Vitória Guimarães) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Shkodran Mustafi (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Davidson (Vitória Guimarães).
Attempt blocked. Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Emile Smith Rowe.
Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Edmond Tapsoba.
Dani Ceballos (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by André Pereira (Vitória Guimarães).
Substitution, Vitória Guimarães. André Pereira replaces Marcus Edwards.
Matteo Guendouzi (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Davidson (Vitória Guimarães).
Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Marcus Edwards.
Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Agu.
Foul by Gabriel Martinelli (Arsenal).
Edmond Tapsoba (Vitória Guimarães) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Substitution, Vitória Guimarães. Pepe replaces André Almeida.
Foul by Dani Ceballos (Arsenal).