10-Man Atletico, Arsenal Game Ends In Stalemate
Written by MaxFM on April 27, 2018
Arsenal were held to a one-all draw by Spanish opposition, Atletico Madrid in the first-leg of the Uefa Europa League semi-final at the Emirates Stadium.
Alexandre Lacazette’s header put the Gunners ahead in the 60th minute after connecting well with Jack Wilshere’s cross from the left corner of Atleti’s box, registering his 16th goal for the Gunners this season.
French playmaker, Antonie Griezmann cancelled out Arsenal’s lead after beig set up by defender, Jose Gimenez and capitalised on defensive errors from Koscielny and Shkrodan Mustafi to set the score on level.
Atletico were down to 10-men before the break after Sime Vrsaljko was sent off for a second challenge in the opening ten minutes. Coach, Diego Simeone was also sent off after pleading in protest with the referee, Clement Turpin over Bellerin’s foul.
Both sides pressed high as It was ‘deja vu’ for Wenger, no doubt bringing back memories of how, in desperately chasing for an equaliser against Monaco – even though there was still an away leg to come – in the Champions League they left themselves totally open.
It led to them conceding a last-ditch third goal to lose 3-1 in 2015.
Few Arsenal fans will be expecting Champions League action again next season now.
Winning the Europa League would have ensured that, but the Madrid side are hot favourites to progress through to the May 16 final.
They will surely not have to play the second-leg with ten men for 80 minutes. That’s what they had to do after having Sime Vrsaljko sent off for two early cautions.
Diego Costa, who terrorised the Arsenal defence while at Chelsea, will be fit to start and the Spanish aces haven’t conceded a goal at their new stadium for 11 games.
Up until the Griezmann goal it was looking like Wenger’s 22-year reign could end on a happy note.
Wenger admitted when he signed Lacazette in the summer it was a struggle luring him away from Lyon, the place of his birth.
Watch highlights below…