GABRIEL JESUS conjured up a Champions League master class as Arsenal delivered a serious dose of pain in Spain.
The brilliant Brazilian was in a class of his own to prove that he can be the clinical finisher his team has been crying out for.
Mikel Arteta has been moaning all season about his team making life difficult for themselves by failing to convert their chances when they have been in control.
But he could have absolutely no complaints about Jesus’ efforts last night as the Gunners held their nerve to secure a crucial away win which leaves them back in control of their European destiny.
There is something special about the Champions League which clearly resonates with Jesus.
In 26 starts in the competition for Manchester City and Arsenal, he has now scored 18 goals and provided four assists.
And few would have been better than his 53rd minute winner curled into the top corner after cutting in from the left to send the travelling fans into raptures.
He had already produced a sublime piece of skill to set up Gabriel Martinelli for Arsenal’s opening goal on the stroke of half-time.
And he never gave poor old Sergio Ramos a moment’s peace on a night the veteran defender will not forget in a hurry.
It is difficult to feel too much sympathy for the former Real Madrid hatchet man who revels in his role as pantomime villain.
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But he will be feeling every one of his 37 years when he wakes up this morning and reflects on the chasing he was given by the relentless Jesus.
No-one appreciated his contribution more than Arteta, who must have been fearing yet more questions about David Raya after another far from convincing performance from the Spanish keeper.
The doubts about Raya first surfaced when his poor kick led to Lens’ opening goal during the 2-1 Champions League defeat at the beginning of the month.
And his distribution was equally iffy against Manchester City before he was lobbed by Mykhailo Mudryk in the 2-2 draw at Chelsea at the weekend.
But Arteta insists he has seen no sign of the keeper suffering a crisis of confidence and insists he is not going to ditch the Spanish international on the back of one mistake.
So it was not much of a surprise when Raya was forced to backpedal when he was caught yards out of his area when Sevilla launched their first attack of the evening.
And it was even less of a shock when his distribution was found wanting yet again and he was fortunate that Dodi Lukebakio was unable to control the gift right in front of goal.
Last season’s Europa League winners were looking for a first win under new boss Diego Alonso after Jose Luis Mendilibar was sacked at the beginning of the month as a consequence of his team’s poor start to the campaign.
And it didn’t take long for Sevilla to show their hand when full-back Marcos Acuna shoved Bukayo Saka to the ground without even trying to make a tackle.
Their lack of pace at the back, where the creaking Ramos was desperately trying to hold things together, was clearly going to be a weakness for Arsenal to target.
And the visitors should have been ahead in the eighth minute when Takehiro Tomiyasu and Jesus combined to send Martinelli in on goal with a couple of slick passes..
But with only the keeper to beat, he shot straight at Orjan Nyland and the ball rebounded back off him and behind for a goal-kick.
Jesus had tried to launch a quick counter attack but was brought to a shuddering halt by a no-nonsense tackle from Leicester loanee Boubakary Soumare as Arsenal looked to step on the gas.
Arsenal were almost undone just before half-time when Youssef El-Nasryi got in behind their defence to fire a low shot just the wrong side of the far post.
But just when it looked as though the team would be going into the interval on level terms, Arsenal struck with a goal of devastating brilliance on the break.
A Sevilla corner was cleared up to Jesus and his jaw-dropping control and turn allowed him to send Martinelli galloping clear from the halfway line.
And there was no mistake from the young Brazilian this time as he calmly went round Nyland and rolled the ball into the empty net.
Sevilla’s Norwegian keeper was left clutching thin air again when Jesus doubled Arsenal’s lead to seemingly put this tie to bed.
Martin Odegaard almost made it three with a rising shot which grazed the top of the bar but nothing is ever straightforward when Arsenal are involved in Europe.
But even when Nemanja Gudeli headed inside the near post from a 59th minute corner, Arteta’s men rarely looked in serious trouble.