Unai Emery praised “fighter” Gabriel Martinelli for making the most of his opportunity after the teenage forward scored twice in Arsenal’s 5-0 Carabao Cup win against Nottingham Forest.
The 18-year-old summer signing made his first competitive start in the third-round game at the Emirates.
Martinelli opened the scoring with a powerful header before scoring a superb long-range second in injury time.
“He’s hungry to have that opportunity to help us,” said Emery.
“He is very humble, he fights. I told him to have some patience for his opportunity to do like he was doing. He did that. He deserved it.”
Arsenal were playing only 48 hours after coming back to defeat Aston Villa 3-2 in the Premier League, but they put in a dominant display against their Championship opponents.
As well as Martinelli’s brace, Rob Holding marked his return from 10 months out through injury with a headed goal while Joe Willock and Reiss Nelson were also on the scoresheet.
Nottingham Forest, who like Arsenal made a raft of changes for the tie, barely troubled their opponents with their only shot on target a late Sammy Ameobi strike that was comfortably saved by Emiliano Martinez.
A big win was capped by the return from injury of defenders Holding and Hector Bellerin after lengthy spells on the sidelines while summer signing Kieran Tierney also made his long-waited debut after recovering from a groin issue.
Emery added: “Some different players gave us their performance and came back after injuries – Rob Holding, Kieran Tierney and Hector Bellerin. This was a good result, a good match, a good game.
“We can be positive for different options.”