Mikel Arteta says Eddie Nketiah is seizing his moment after Arsenal beat Oxford

Mikel Arteta believes Eddie Nketiah is seizing his moment by scoring twice in the third round of the FA Cup which Arsenal won at Oxford.

The 23-year-old has already scored five goals in as many games as he continues to replace Gabriel Jesus after the Brazilian striker suffered a knee injury at the World Cup.

Nketiah scored twice in a 3-0 win at Kassam Stadium. Two clever finishes added sparkle to a difficult match with Mohamed Elneny’s goal.

Eddie Nketiah impressed with Arsenal

Eddie Nketiah impressed by Arsenal (Nick Potts/PA)

Having started the season on the bench, Nketiah is now Arsenal’s leading scorer alongside more regular first-team starters Martin Odegaard, Bukayo Saki and Gabriel Martinelli.

“Of course he was waiting for this moment,” Arteta said of Nketiah after the win.

“He was patient when he needed to be, but he also had the right attitude and prepared for that moment.

“That’s why I think he looks ready and that’s why he’s playing the way he is. He showed great control.

“He is a great finisher, timing his runs and making decisions until the last minute when the goalkeeper is involved shows his quality.

“His understanding, his pace of work, I think he’s getting better.”

With Jesus eliminated, Nketiah is now the only recognized striker in Arteta’s ranks and the Arsenal boss is hoping to see support in the January window as his side look to build a five-point lead at the top of the Premier League.

“The problem is we only have one striker and coping for many months until Gabby returns is not easy,” he added.

But we need to get the most out of the players we have at the moment. If we can have some meals, great.

A win at Oxford from the third tier means Arsenal will now travel to face Manchester City in the fourth round, with Pep Guardiola’s side also second in the table ready to pounce on any mistakes.

“It’s always hard to win games like this,” added Arteta.

“They matched, it was a physical game at many points, but we stuck to it. They are a direct team and we needed to control some things better.

“We turned things around in the second half and got more control of the game and found the openings to win.”

Arteta also allayed Saka’s injury concerns ahead of Sunday’s north London derby against Tottenham by confirming the England striker was “fine” despite limping in the second half.

For Oxford, the spirited performance did nothing positive, but manager Karl Robinson was pleased with the show.

“We lost control of the game in the middle of the second half,” he said.

“From my point of view, the players were proud of the club. We fought in all fields. They didn’t seem to be a team that far removed from the other team.

“We have good players, for the first time I have probably the strongest team to compete. We have a good squad, a good team – one that is full of energy and exciting to watch.

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