Where do I start?
It was a night where the world didn’t give Arsenal a chance. When the fixtures were released in December, it was sensible to give the tie to Barcelona. It looked impossible for Arsenal to usurp the Catalians especially with the trio of Messi, Suarez and Neymar. But for the brave, nothing is impossible. You have no chance at all if you don’t try.
There was belief among the Gunners as they filed out against Barcelona last night. This was a team stronger than the 2011 side that got a victory over the Catalians. They went against the odds and knew the victory and glory thereof was theirs.
By half time, the belief had tripled. A draw was possible and a win was not unlikely. We had missed chances to draw blood from the Aliens. It was like The 300 against the hordes of Persia. Fear brewed in the camp of the Persians after series of failed attacks just like Barcelona huffed and puffed with no clear cut chance. The half had “OX” written all over it. He should have scored and made better use of the counter that got him injured.
Suarez may have scored on the dot of half time but it was a commendable half for the Gunners. Koscielny tackled, Cech saved. Alexis dribbled, Bellerin ran. Monreal defended, Ozil created chances. The team suffocated the Catalians but were happy to allow them enjoy possession (30-70).
For 65 minutes, the Gunners held on. They had thrown the Spartan spear at Barcelona, missed drawing blood by inches, but stroke fear into Xerxes heart. He was human afterall, just like the Barcelona team. But the Gunners had wasted their chances – Giroud should have shot at goal instead of trying to get Walcott who was a ghost since he came on for the injured Ox.
Just when Arsenal began to enjoy possession, they forgot about the goat pass. They had been drawn away and the MSN gang had numerous acres of land to execute judgement. Everyone was caught off guard – Metersacker missed his slide, it was 3-on-2 against Koscielny and Monreal. The ball rolled to Messi and Cech was beaten for the 1st time by the Argentine.
Off went Giroud, followed by Coquelin. In came Welbeck and later on Flamini. The Billionaire needed just 47 seconds to stamp his authority on the best player on earth. Per set the Frenchman up by failing to clear properly who had no option but to bring Messi down. A penalty and a goal.
2-0 down and the game was over. It could have been 3-0 but Cech saved. This was disappointing. It hurt. Ozil was mad. Koscielny was disgusted. Wenger was angered.
We were disciplined defensively but we knew that if we had to keep it at 0-0, we would keep it at 0-0. They are better than us, everybody knows that, but I think we could’ve won the game tonight if we kept the discipline until the end. Once again, like against Monaco, exactly the same thing happened. We were caught in exactly the same way. – Wenger
In all, Barcelona is beatable, but you must take your chances. Arsenal failed to take their chances and gifted errors to lose the game.
We march on to Old Trafford. We focus on the League now. We are Arsenal.