Henrikh Mkhitaryan opens Arsenal account as Gunners triumph in Milan

Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s first Arsenal goal helped put the Gunners in control of their Europa League last-16 tie with AC Milan.

The winger and Aaron Ramsey struck to earn Arsenal, who need to win the European competition to avoid ending the season empty-handed, a 2-0 victory at San Siro.

Arsenal host Milan in next week’s second leg and they started brightly, with Mkhitaryan opening the scoring when he collected Mesut Ozil’s pass on the left.

The Armenian also hit the bar in first-half stoppage time before Ramsey made it 2-0 when he latched onto a fine ball from Ozil to round Gianluigi Donnarumma and net.

Milan had been unbeaten in their previous 12 games and had not conceded in their last six games.

Elsewhere, Saul Niguez’s double, including a stunning solo strike, inspired Atletico Madrid to a deserved 3-0 win against Lokomotiv Moscow.

The midfielder struck in each half as the two-time Europa League winners put themselves on course for the quarter-finals.

His first came after he rode a challenge near the halfway line before advancing and, as the Moscow defence backed off, unleashing an unstoppable effort which darted into the top corner.

Niguez then added a second two minutes after the break and Koke bagged a late third with Atletico in control.

Valon Berisha’s double earned Red Bull Salzburg a 2-1 win at Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund.

The Norway midfielder scored twice for the Austrians in the second half, his first a penalty, but Andre Schurrle pulled a goal back to keep the tie alive for Dortmund.

In Russia, Lyon also grabbed a slender 1-0 first-leg lead against CSKA Moscow thanks to Marcelo’s first-half goal.