Raúl Jiménez threw a ball at the Quarry, but the arsenalists were not disoriented, recovered from a two-goal deficit and advanced to the Europa League round of 32.
The Braga Municipal Stadium received, this Thursday, what will surely be remembered as one of the most exciting games of this edition of the Europa League, which pitted Sporting Braga and Wolverhampton face to face.
There was no doubt that the arsenalists were unwilling to accept a ‘gentlemen’s agreement’ – a draw would draw both teams – they were undone when André Horta opened the scoring after six minutes with a shot that deflected in Rúben Neves before to ‘betray’ Rui Patrício.
On the other hand, the ‘wolves’ were also not for ‘jokes’ and showed their teeth three times in the first half, the result of a hat-taking display of Raúl Jiménez, who was present in three goals in the space of just 21 minutes
At 14 minutes, the former Benfica player used his head to restore equality in Minho. At 34, with great class, he assisted Matt Doherty for the ‘somersault’ goal, and the next minute left the ball to Adama Traoré’s goal.
Emotions were running hot, but the story was not yet fully told. In the second half, Sporting Braga regained control of the game, reaching the final 3-3, first by Paulinho and then by captain Fransérgio.
Equality in a ‘crazy game’, which ultimately benefited both teams, who booked a place in the next round of the Europa League. Arsenalists are now leaving for the final day knowing that they will have to beat Slovan Bratislava in Slovakia to secure top-flight status.