Well that could not have gone much worse for Arsenal in our first Champions League game. At least we did not pick up an injury and still have plenty of games to qualify but this one was a nightmare. We didn’t play well but luck was definitely against Arsenal tonight.
I don’t think that Arsenal were complacent or that we took Dinamo Zagreb lightly, but it was difficult to know what to expect and they soon showed us why they went last season unbeaten, defending well and breaking with real danger. Having said that, we were still on top and looking the most likely to score when they took the lead.
It was a good break and both Debuchy and Chamberlain were caught out of position on our right, but there was a huge slice of luck for them in the goal. Not only was it their first shot on target, but Ospina got down and saved well, only for the rebound to bounce off the Ox, I think, and into the net.
We can rightly complain about Giroud’s sending off as well but the ref was in no mood to be lenient and Giroud had no need to upset him for the first yellow. He was playing poorly anyway and should have given us the lead, instead we were in deep trouble at halftime. The officials gave us nothing all night to be honest.
The Gunners were much better after the break and it looked like we could hit back but once again we were knocked back and Zagreb scored against the run of play, this time from a corner and you have to ask questions about our defending. All hope seemed lost but Wenger rolled the dice and brought on Walcott, Campbell and Coquelin all at once.
It still looked forlorn but Walcott gave us hope with a great goal in the 79th minute. Credit to the players for their efforts but it was not to be.