Arsenal qualified to the knockout stages of the Europa League after Xhaka’s second half strike gave the Gunners a 1-0 win over PSV Eindhoven at the Emirates.
It was Arsenal’s third consecutive 1-0 win. Saka’s fortunate goal at FK Bodo/Glimt was followed by an acute strike at Elland Road. The Gunners have enjoyed clean sheets on European nights this season.
While the three matches ended in the same scoreline, Arsenal had more possession on European nights. Against Leeds, Arsenal were pegged back and Leeds were all over the place like a swarm of bees. How Arsenal escaped Elland Road with a three points is worthy of a detailed study.
Last night, Ruud Van Nistelrooy led his Dutch side PSV to the Emirates but were limited to just 2 shots on target in the match. There were talks about Gakpo & Xavi but Arsenal put up enough opposition to limit their output.
XI: Turner, Tomiyasu (White 76′), Holding, Gabriel, Tierney, Lokonga (Partey 67′), Xhaka, Saka (Nelson 85′), Vieira (Odegaard 67′), Nketiah, Jesus (Martinelli 76′)
Gabriel Jesus made his 1st start for Arsenal on the continent and had 5 shots in the game. He was unfortunate not to have gotten a goal last night. Eddie Nketiah played from the right flank and had 6 shots.
The winning goal came in the 70th minute. Odegaard found Tomiyasu on the right and the fullback’s pass into the box got to Xhaka. The in-form midfielder found the back of the net in one strike. It was his 3rd goal of the season, as much as he scored in the 3 previous seasons combined.
Overall Arsenal had 17 shots, 7 on target and 60% ball possession. The Gunners need a point finish top of the table and avoid the next (qualification) round of the Europa League.
The Ladies are not left out of the Arsenal goodies. They whipped the UWCL defending Champions Lyon 5-1 in France. Can you believe it? The two Arsenal teams are top of the tables at home and on the continent.
Next: Arsenal will travel to Southampton in the Premier League on Sunday.