4 Things We Learned From Our Tricky Trip To Turkey
Following on from Arsenal’s impressive 3-0 away win at Fenerbache in the Champions League play offs, Gunner333 give us 4 things we learned from the game.
Following on from Arsenal’s impressive 3-0 away win at Fenerbache, Gunner333 give us 4 things we learned from the game.
After our disappointing defeat to Villa last week-end, there were many frustrated Arsenal fans expecting a response from their beloved Gooners in a tough away trip to Turkey, where Fenerbache awaited in a Champions League play-off.
Noise from the home crowd was always a concern for Arsene’s men, but after controlling the game for the first quarter of an hour, the Turks seemed to have quietened down. Chances came and went but the home side’s defence remained stubborn and seemed able to cope with anything the London side had to throw at them, without creating anything at the other end.
Arsenal’s defensive injury worries continued when a high challenge on Koscielny from Webo, caused the 27-year-old to make away for Carl Jenkinson, forcing Sagna to play centre half in preparation for Saturday.
A frustrating first half for the Gunners lead to it being goal-less at the break with the away team have six shots to Fenerbache’s none.
Despite starting the second half better than they ended the first, the Turkish side went behind when Gibbs finished off Walcott’s cross to make it 1-0. This sparked a dominant period in the game for Arsenal with goalkeeper Volkan being called into action more and more frequently.
Just past the hour-mark Welshman Ramsey fired a shot low at goal which was fumbled by the keeper and found a way into the goal, 2-0. Roughly fifteen minutes left and Arsenal were awarded a penalty when Walcott was brought down by Kadlec. Giroud scored and it looked more likely that the North London club would be in the Champions League once again. Full time and it looks as if a miracle is needed for Fenerbache to progress.
Here are 4 things we can learn from the game:
1. We’re Finding New Ways to Attack
The cliché of us wanting to ‘walk the ball into the net’ is slowly fading and this was especially exhibited against Fenerbache as we were showing more creative ways to attack and create chances.
There were many times in the game where we were looking for space behind the full-backs in order to release Walcott down the wing so he could whip in a cross. We seemed to be more direct and less willing to just pass the ball through midfield aimlessly. If we continue playing in this way we will become less predictable to play against, find goals from new areas and give ourselves more options going forward.
2. Giroud Presence Important
It was obvious from the opening stages that the Fenerbache defence knew who their main man to mark was and by allowing them to concentrate on Giroud it opened up space for the likes of Cazorla and Walcott.
Two or even three defenders would be on the Frenchman at a time and while this limited Giroud’s immediate impact on the game, it lead to others being able to influence things more. The big striker is certainly a handful and I think his presence would be even more effective if we were to play two up front at times.
3. Dealing With Intimidating Crowds
Few countries have louder more intimidating fans than Turkey and, as I previously mentioned, this was a deep concern for Arsenal before the game. In the end though we seemed perfectly capable of shrugging off the intimidating atmosphere and putting in an excellent performance.
This is surely great practice for those big games against sides with intimidating crowds such as Munich, Tottenham, Barcelona, Liverpool or Juventus. Our squad is no longer full of kids and this experience is vital in dealing with the pressure occasions.
4. Ramsey Growing
Just a couple of seasons ago he was sidelined with a broken leg. However, Aaron Ramsey highlighted last night that he is growing with a Man of the Match display. All night he looked positive and was attacking with aggression. His goal capped a great evening’s work and he could become a permanent fixture in this Arsenal side.
On Saturday I spoke of Wenger’s need to introduce Rosicky more and after last night it’s clear that Wilshere and Cazorla face some serious competition from Ramsey and the Czech this season.
Thanks for reading and feel free to comment below.
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