Arsenal progressed to the last-32 of the Europa League on Thursday evening with a comfortable 3-0 win over Molde in Norway.
Second half strikes from Nicolas Pepe, Reiss Nelson and substitute Folarin Balogun got the job done for Mikel Arteta’s side after they were left frustrated in the opening 45 minutes.
Whilst the performance will not live long in the memory of Arsenal’s supporters, with the contest lacking few flash points, it will be a night that 19-year-old Balogun remembers for the rest of his life.
Having been awarded his senior Arsenal debut against Dundalk last month, appearing as a late substitute, Arteta, who will now be hoping to see his side return to winning ways in the Premier League on Sunday evening against Wolverhampton Wanderers, handed the youngster another opportunity to test himself at first-team level.
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With Pepe and Nelson’s goal having fired Arsenal into a two-goal advantage, Arteta made the decision to introduce Balogun with just eight minutes of the contest remaining, replicating Eddie Nketiah.
And less than 60 seconds after stepping off the bench, the striker was slipped in by Emile Smith Rowe, turned inside the penalty area and fired a low effort past Molde goalkeeper Andreas Linde.
It was an impressive strike from the youngster, generating a moment that he and his family are unlikely to ever forget.
Whilst Balogun celebrated on the pitch, donning a massive smile, and Arteta applauded on the sidelines, the Arsenal supporters, though not present in Norway, celebrated back home.
Hundreds of them flooded social media with messages of congratulations for the highly-rated youngster, who Arsenal are hoping to tie down to a new contract.
As well as congratulating the teenage starlet on his first senior goal, no shortage of Arsenal fans called…