Outgoing Arsenal supervisor Arsene Wenger lamented a well-known defensive lapse as his aspect did not money in on a person benefit for over eighty minutes in a 1-1 draw with Atletico Madrid within the first leg of their Europa League semi-last on Thursday.
Antoine Griezmann’s away aim eight minutes from time is a physique blow to Wenger’s hopes of bowing out after 22 years on a excessive within the ultimate on Might sixteen, and Arsenal’s probabilities of enjoying Champions League soccer subsequent season.
Sime Vrsaljko’s early purple card handed the Gunners the initiative, nevertheless, they have been made to rue a number of missed possibilities earlier than and after Alexandre Lacazette headed them in entrance on the hour mark.
“I really feel we produced the efficiency we needed to supply, however the outcome is just not according to the efficiency,” stated Wenger.
“We will solely take a look at ourselves for tonight’s end result as a result of 1-zero is an ideal end result at residence. It was as much as us to not make a mistake…it’s a story we’ve got seen earlier than.”
Atletico coach Diego Simeone was additionally despatched to the stands shortly after Vrsaljko’s dismissal, however the Spaniards resisted manfully and Simeone hailed their resistance.
“You have no concept how onerous it’s to defend and defend and defend,” stated Simeone. “You need to have big balls to defend for greater than eighty minutes like that.
“These gamers of Atletico Madrid are heroes to withstand like that.”
Arsenal now have to turn into the primary away group to attain in 12 matches at Atletico’s Wanda Metropolitano stadium subsequent week to progress, and Simeone urged the house help to create an explosive environment.
“Subsequent week the stadium has to blow up with constructive power,” added the Argentine.
“We will play nicely or badly however you do not see this dedication in all places…I’ve goosebumps excited about subsequent week already.”
There was a extremely-charged environment for Wenger’s penultimate residence recreation in cost and the hosts got loads of encouragement early on, even when nonetheless up towards Atletico’s full complement.
Lacazette volleyed off the surface of the submit and compelled Jan Oblak into the primary of a collection of effective saves with a header from shut vary.
Vrsaljko had been booked inside two minutes for bringing down Jack Wilshere.
And the Croatian left his aspect a person mild after simply 10 minutes when French referee Clement Turpin confirmed no leniency for an additional late problem on Lacazette.
Moments later, Simeone was additionally dismissed by the officious referee for taking his protests too far when an Arsenal participant wasn’t booked for what he thought was an analogous foul.
Atletico’s wonderful defensive document is what has carried them to 5 European semi-finals in seven seasons underneath Simeone.
The guests battened down the hatches with 10 males, however have been reliant on Oblak, who Wenger described as “probably the greatest goalkeepers on the planet”, to maintain them within the tie.
“In fact you come out tonight with a bitter style as a result of we had the probabilities to be within the remaining tonight,” added Wenger.
“The remorse is we weren’t medical sufficient.”
Atletico retreated ever deeper in the direction of their very own aim after the break and have been lastly punished on the hour mark when Wilshere’s deep cross discovered Lacazette rising above Lucas Hernandez to go in his seventh aim in seven video games.
Arsenal might and will have added to their lead, however as an alternative some comical defending value them dearly when Atletico grabbed an important away aim.
Griezmann outmuscled French worldwide staff-mate Laurent Koscielny after which benefited from a slip by Shkodran Mustafi after his preliminary effort had been saved by David Ospina to prod his twenty seventh aim of the season into the roof of the web.
There was nonetheless time for Oblak to point out why Griezmann is not the one Atletico participant needed by Europe’s elite with a spectacular one-handed save to show Aaron Ramsey’s header behind and maintain Los Rojiblancos on track for a 3rd European remaining in 5 seasons.
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