By Alan Duffy
Arsenal 0-2 Bayern Munich – Champions League Last 16 1st Leg – 19th February 2014
It had all started so well for Arsenal on Wednesday night. Taking the game to European champions Bayern, the north Londoners pressed and pushed for a goal, creating a couple of chances before Mesut Ozil was felled in the box after a clever flick past Jerome Boateng. However, as was the case with his penalty miss against Marseille earlier in the campaign, the ridiculously-maligned German playmaker produced a limp effort which was easily stopped by Manuel Neuer.
That miss rather took the wind out of the Gunners’ sails but the next penalty incident would prove the real game-changer. Arjen Robben latched onto a clever through ball, only for Wojciech Szczesny to foul the Dutch scamp, with the predictable red card to follow. Although, if you think about it, surely Boateng’s foul on Ozil also denied a goalscoring opportunity? Anyway, David Alaba then missed the ensuing spot-kick although the writing really was on the wall for the Gunners.
Second-half, the superb Toni Kroos eventually broke down Arsenal’s stout defending courtesy of a superb effort from the edge of the box before, at the death, sub Thomas Mueller sealed the deal and probably finished off the tie.
An unfortunate evening for Arsenal but their performance when it was 11 v 11 should give them some semblance of a boost.