Francesc Fabregas underlined his return to full fitness with a magnificent strike as Arsenal Reserves completed a deserved win over Coventry on Tuesday night.

The 16-year-old Spaniard was laid low for a month with back and groin injuries but made his comeback last week, playing 45 minutes against Ipswich.

Fabregas emerged unscathed from that game and proved he was back to his best with a sparkling display against the Sky Blues.

The youngest goalscorer in Arsenal's history struck after just seven minutes, collecting a short pass from Stephen Bradley before firing a shot into the top corner from range.

Within two minutes Arsenal doubled their lead as on-loan striker Michal Papadopulos soared at the near post to head home John Spicer's cross - his second goal for the second string.

That was effectively game over as Eddie Niedzwiecki's young team maintained their grip on the match and refused to let Coventry back into contention.

In fact, Arsenal could easily have won by a more emphatic margin.

Adam Birchall fired over the top when well placed and substitute Dean McDonald forced a fine save from the Coventry goalkeeper with five minutes left.

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17 Feb 2004