Deja vu at the Emirates as we suffered our second 5-1 defeat at the hands of Bayern Munich in the space of just 3 weeks.
There’s no doubt even prior to last nights kick off the tie was dead and buried and even Tom Cruise couldn’t have dreamt of completing this mission impossible.
A handful of Arsenal fans participated in yet another pre-planned, half hearted protest regarding the boss’ future and having seen it first hand it was nothing short pathetic.
Before I continue, I’d like to clear up a couple of refereeing decisions that have left sections of our support outraged and given the clueless ones an excuse to latch onto as to why we were dumped out of the competition.
Walcott Penalty Appeal
At the time of the incident, I called for a penalty. I was convinced that Xabi Alonso made zero contact with the ball and simply took out Theo.
I’ve watched it back more than ten times since and whilst I now think the referee got this wrong, the fact it took me so many replays to decide means I won’t be using it as a sole excuse for our exit.
Verdict: Incorrect Decision, but at full speed a tough one to call.
Bayern Penalty & Koscielny Sending Off
Laurent Koscielny made no attempt to play the ball and by the rules he was correctly shown a red card. The confusion came when the referee firstly brandished the yellow card and then proceeded to show a straight red just seconds after.
I initially thought Koscielny may have said something out of line and that was the reason for his dismissal but it has since come to light that the referee was correcting his initial mistake.
Here at SSN we have been receiving messages stating that Koscielny’s dismissal was wrong based on the current rule around “denial of a goalscoring opportunity”
Below is the up to date rule and so the officials were within their rights to dismiss the Arsenal defender if they adjudged it to be a foul.
There is certainly a case that Lewandowski was offside, that’s a whole different argument and isn’t up for debate so once again we can feel hard done by.
Verdict: Incorrect decision. Lewandowski is in an offside position initially and so the rest of it isn’t worth debating.
In reality, those two moments are not the reason we lost this tie, wake up Gooner’s!
As I mentioned above, the tie was done and dusted before a ball was even kicked tonight.
We are a side who lack belief in our defensive capabilities and the heavy beatings we’ve taken at the hands of our rivals in recent years have contributed and are evidence to this.
Some may call me negative but having conceded the equaliser and accepted the fact the tie was over my priorities would have been completely different.
There comes a point where as a manager you need to accept the tie is over, shut up shop, get a draw out of the game, a positive result you can build on going forward.
On the night, decisions went against us and the tie was over, as a manager there’s nothing you can do about that.
However, you can do your upmost to ensure your team get a positive result and then take those positives to grow and improve for what’s left of the campaign.
In true Arsenal style we did the complete opposite and capitulated. This great club has suffered another damaging and embarrassing defeat.
Ten goals conceded on aggregate, sealing our place as the number one laughing stock of Europe.
Football is a confidence game and that only comes from positive results. We may have it in abundance as an attacking force but the fans nor the players believe we are capable of defending competently when it matters.
Both Wenger’s and his players attitude was nothing short of appalling once Bayern equalised.
It’s as if to say who cares, I can just blame it on the decisions. There’s always somebody else to blame. Once again, no accountability amongst players or manager for our capitulation in BOTH fixtures.
Wenger slumped further into his seat, a beaten man and as the pressure on him mounts I wouldn’t be surprised if he announced his departure in the coming weeks.
Prior to this fixture all I wanted was to see Arsenal fight and get a positive result on the night. Sadly that was only evident in the first half. I was the first to praise them on their first half display so I have every right to criticise their second half showing.