Laurent Koscielny played for the first time since May as Arsenal completed their near-perfect Europa League group stage with an easy win over Qarabag.
Unai Emery’s side had already qualified for the knockout round and go through as Group E winners, with five victories and one draw from their six matches.
Alexandre Lacazette scored the only goal of a tame match with a slick 16th-minute winner from Mesut Ozil’s pass.After the break, Eddie Nketiah had a headed goal ruled out for offside.
And in the 89th-minute, 17-year-old winger Bukayo Saka missed a chance to become Arsenal’s youngest goalscorer in Europe as he smashed a finish into the face of Qarabag goalkeeper Vagner.
Koscielny, 33, ruptured his Achilles in last season’s semi-finals defeat by Atletico Madrid.
He had very little work to do against Qarabag, who only went close when Donald Guerrier headed over, before being replaced in the 72nd minute.
Victory extends Arsenal’s unbeaten run into a 22nd match. It is their longest run without defeat in all competitions since a 28-game stretch that ended in November 2007.
As group winners, Arsenal will avoid the four best-placed teams teams dropping down from the Champions League in the draw for the last 32, which takes place on Monday (BBC)