Eric Lichaj picked quite the time to record the first brace of his professional career — and did so in spectacular fashion, to boot.
The U.S. national team defender scored a pair of first-half goals — including a stunning volley from 18 yards out — as Nottingham Forest shocked Arsenal with a 4-2 win in the FA Cup third round Sunday.
It was the first two-goal game for Lichaj, who entered the match with just seven goals over 254 appearances in all competitions playing for Aston Villa, Lincoln City, Leyton Orient, Leeds United and Forest.
As Forest lined up a 20th-minute free kick Sunday at City Ground, the 29-year-old right back made a run toward David Ospina's goalmouth and headed home a Kieran Dowell service from point-blank range to open the scoring.
While Per Mertesacker drew Arsenal level just three minutes later, Lichaj restored the Forest advantage with a memorable strike a minute before halftime.
Collecting a half-clearance at the top of the penalty area, Lichaj chested the ball down and sent a swerving volley into the top corner.
And Forest never surrendered the lead this time, as the Championship side had penalties from Ben Brereton and Kieran Dowell sandwich a Danny Welbeck strike to seal the upset.
The historic triumph saw Arsenal lose its third-round matchup for the first time since falling to Sheffield United in January 1996, seven months before hiring Arsene Wenger as manager.