Brentford suffered their first home defeat of the season as Arsenal climbed back to the top of the Premier League table thanks to a 3-0 win at the Gtech Community Stadium. 

The away side were full value for their victory, given to them thanks to first-half headers from William Saliba and Gabriel Jesus, as well as Fábio Vieira’s long-range effort early in the second half. 

Ahead of kick-off, both sides, and sets of supporters, paid a moving tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Following an immaculately observed period of silence, Lloyd Griffith led a rousing rendition of God Save The King.

When the action on the pitch got underway it was Arsenal who quickly settled into their stride.

The away side dominated possession and territory from the outset and should have opened the scoring within 90 seconds. A low cross found Martinelli in the centre of the box; he had time to take a touch but slipped as he went for goal and the ball bobbled gently through to David Raya. 

Playing predominantly on the break, Brentford’s best chance of the early stages came when Raya found Rico Henry with a pinpoint pass. Henry took it down and delivered for Bryan Mbeumo at the back post but his header looped into the arms of Aaron Ramsdale. 

That was a rare moment of alarm for the away side who continued to ask questions of the Brentford backline. In the 17th minute, Bukayo Saka whipped an in-swinging corner to the near post. Saliba got there first and glanced a header across goal. Time stood still as it bounced off the far post and over the line, despite Raya’s best efforts to keep it out.

The away side doubled their lead ten minutes later; Jesus peeled away to the back post and nodded Granit Xhaka’s teasing centre past Raya from close range.

Arsenal sensed a chance to put the game to bed before the break. With Xhaka and Thomas Partey winning second balls, the Gunners were able to spend long periods in the Brentford half, moving the ball around and looking for openings.

Saka cut inside and fired over the right edge of the box before Xhaka sent a long-range effort fizzing just over Raya’s bar. 

Ben Mee made another crucial defensive intervention, blocking Saka’s curling shot, before Kieran Tierney had a go from 25 yards – again Raya didn’t have to deal with the effort as it flew off target. 

The final action of the half saw the Bees front two combine to fashion out a chance but Mbeumo’s flicked header from the penalty spot following Ivan Toney’s deep cross bounced wide of Ramsdale’s left post. 

Brentford needed a strong start to the second half to get back into the game but got the exact opposite as Arsenal added a third. Vieira was allowed too much time just outside the box to pick his spot and fire past Raya, via the inside of the post. 

The Gunners went into game management mode after adding the third and this allowed Brentford to put more pressure on Ramsdale’s goal. After Mee was fouled just outside the D, Jensen set the ball off for Toney who flicked it up and volleyed narrowly over the bar. 

Arsenal were still very much a threat and Raya was forced into two fine saves to keep the away side down to three. First, he rushed out to the feet of Jesus and spread himself well to block a close-range effort before going full-stretch to turn Saka’s curling shot around the post. 

Ramsdale wasn’t to be outdone at the other end as he too was quickly off his line to deny substitute Mikkel Damsgaard his first goal in Brentford colours; the Dane had latched on to fellow substitute Shandon Baptiste’s pass on the right side of the area. 

That proved to be the final meaningful action of an afternoon of high emotion in West London. 

Brentford: Raya; Hickey, Ajer, Jansson, Mee; Henry; Janelt (Onyeka 63), Jensen (Baptiste 69), Dasilva (Damsgaard 63); Mbeumo (Wissa 76), Toney

Subs not used: Strakosha, Canós, Zanka, Ghoddos, Roerslev

Arsenal: Ramsdale; White (Tomiaysu 86), Saliba, Gabriel, Tierney; Partey (Lokonga 78), Xhaka; Saka (Marquinhos 90+2), Vieira (Nwaneri 90+2), Martinelli (Nketiah 78); Jesus

Subs not used: Turner, Holding, Smith, Sousa

Attendance: 17,122