‘Many pundits would expect Arsenal to roll over and get beaten, but if there is one thing that this present squad of gooners have is Strength and character and if there is any team in Europe that you would expect to deal with Dortmund at their backyard, it has to be Arsenal’
This was the last paragraph of my article yesterday and how I was proved right. The gooner practically went to Hell and silenced it. Arsenal had a superb 1-0 over German giants Borussia Dortmund at the Signal Iduna Park. Man of the moment, Aaron Ramsey got the all important goal in the 62 minute.
Wenger stuck with the same team that overcame Liverpool while Dortmund paraded team that won at the Emirates except for Greek defender Sokratis who came in for Hummels. Dortmund clearly wanted to punish Arsenal from the start. Mertesacker cleared off the ball from Lewandowski foot early on. Subotic and Kuba had firther efforts but did not trouble Szczesny in goal. However, Armeanian midfielder Mkhitaryan’s effort went just wide. Arsenal were inidustrious in their half and heeded tto my advice of not giving the Dortmund players any space with their high line tackling technique. Arsenal surprisingly went 45 minutes without registering a single attempt . Funny statistics.
The second half started with Dortmund having the chances, Szczesny saved from Reus header, the German thought he had scored in the 52 minute but his effort was correctly ruled offside. In the 62 minute, the gooners went for a rare move into Dortmund’s 18 yard box and they got the lead. Ozil and Giroud combined wonderfully to release Ramsey, whose header went into the bottom corner.
Signal Iduna Park was stunned, Hell was silenced.
That goal seemed to open the flood gates and the gooners would have added another. Rambo’s effort was saved, Sahin cleared off the line and Merteacker was centimeters away from connecting with a cross. Dortmund puffed and hustled but could not break the resilient Arsenal defence.
SZCZESNY: was again his dominant self. Saved from Reus header early in the second half and was superb (7)
SAGNA: impeachable, dealt with the threat of Reus and co, defended well and went forward too. Solid performance (7.5)
KOSCIENLY: super Laurent, great defensive display by the French man (8)
MERTESACKER: solid partnership with Koscienly. Another dominant display by the big freindly German (8)
GIBBS: I was so pleased that his calf injury was not serious. Great performance and dealt with the threat of Kuba and Aubameyang(8)
ARTETA: the stand in captain was awesome. Controlled events in the middle, covered well and was key to Arsenal played (8.5)
RAMSEY: did a lot of running and was his industrious self. Got the important goal. Another excellent performance (8)
CARZOLA: was subdued for much of the game but did a lot of closing down and tracking back (6)
OZIL was almost anonymous in the first half. Came to life in the second half and was key to Arsenal’s superb second half half attempts (7)
ROSICKY: sometimes I wonder if Rosicky is 33. He was buzzing, tackling everybody, won the ball a lot of times, made crucial interceptions .He was just awesome, perfect. Keeping Rosicky fit would be crucial to the gooner’s aspiration this season (8.5)
GIROUD: held up play but I was well marked by Sokratis and Subotic. Gave an assist and was his normal committed self (7)
SUBS: Monreal (6), Bendtner and Vermaelen (N/A)
MAN OF THE MATCH: I am spoilt for choices. Mertesacker, Koscienly, Rosicky, Ramsey were all superb. However, for the second game in a row. I believe the accolade belongs to Arteta. The Spaniard was great, marshaled the midfield to great effect and covered his defence effectively.
BIG QUESTION: THIS SET OF GOONERS ARE PROVING EVERYONE WRONG. THEY MIGHT NOT BE AS FLASHY ANS CLASSY AS THE INVICINBLES BUT THEY ARE A COMMITTED BUNCH. CAN THEY GO THE LENGTH AND END THE CLUB’S TROPHY-LESS RUN?
A Greek philosopher once said that when you re seeking revenge dig two graves, one for the offender and the other for the offended. However, the Gooners got their revenge against Dortmund and only one grave was present and it belonged to Dortmund #COYG
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