West Bromwich 0 Arsenal 2: Aliadière leads charge of Arsenal's young guns

Time marches on so briskly at Arsenal that Jérémie Aliadière is no longer regarded as a youngster. And the 23-year-old forward stepped up last night as the guiding light of a side wet behind the ears even by the standards of his manager's radical Carling Cup ways.

Aliadière scored twice to ensure smooth passage at West Bromwich Albion, who were reminded of the Premiership's perils as their sequence of four successive wins was ended. The team just taken over by Tony Mowbray had their moments but were picked off in a manner to support Arsène Wenger's belief that he could be about to lift this trophy for the first time.

More of his talented next generation were on show: Matthew Connolly and the impressive Brazilian Under-19 captain, Denilson, while Theo Walcott, on the right, marked his first full game by seeing a late shot tipped wide by Russell Hoult. It was a bold selection and Wenger said: "I was worried that if it didn't work, we might lose and confidence would drop. But it was a great performance. Denilson has a tremendous presence and Jérémie was very mobile."

In an Albion side showing six changes of their own, Nathan Ellington crossed well for Jonathan Greening to slice a volley over before Manuel Almunia dived to palm away his stinging 25-yard free-kick.

Arsenal's inconvenience at losing Emmanuel Adebayor to a thigh injury that may rule him out of the match with Everton at the weekend did not stop them taking a 33rd-minute lead. Aliadière dashed into the area from the left and was clipped by Steve Watson. The Frenchman steered his penalty low beyond Hoult.

Aliadière missed a clear chance to add a second before perfectly anticipating the delivery of Walcott's 49th-minute free-kick to angle a sweet first-time shot into the bottom corner.

When Albion did find a way through a defence well led by Philippe Senderos on his return, Greening shot over after a one-two with Diomansy Kamara.

"Arsenal's technical ability and athleticism are something we won't see in the Championship," Mowbray said. "It's a benchmark for us because Arsenal play where we want to be."

West Bromwich Albion (4-4-2): Hoult; Watson, Davies, McShane, Robinson; Greening, Chaplow (Gera, 58), Quashie (Albrechtsen, 68), Carter (Kamara, 36); Hartson, Ellington. Substitutes not used: Steele (gk), Wallwork.

Arsenal (4-4-2): Almunia; Connolly, Senderos, Djourou, Clichy; Walcott, Song, Denilson, Flamini; Adebayor (Traoré, 24), Aliadière. Substitutes not used: Poom (gk), O'Cearuill, Randall, Simpson.

Referee: M Atkinson (W Yorkshire).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory