Off key Arsenal lose in Cologne but win Europa League group

It did not matter in the end what result Arsenal got away to Cologne tonight, as the other two clubs in our Europa League group drew so the Gunners will win the group anyway, but it was not exactly what we need in terms of form and confidence.

Arsenal were the better team for most of this away tie but it just would not quite click up front, while yet another in a season full of dodgy penalty decisions going against us meant that the Germans were able to score the opener and then hold on valiantly for what is a huge result for the team rock bottom of the Bundesliga.

Coquelin was only stopped from scoring his first Gunners goal by the post in the first half and there were a few more chances scattered through the match, especially as we pushed for a late equaliser, but our control of the ball did not lead to enough real chances on a frustrating night.

Welbeck and Chambers played their first games after injury so that was a positive, and players like Holding and Wilshere got more useful game time as did up and coming young Gunners like Maitland-Niles and Nelson. The penalty was a blatant dive although Debuchy should maybe not have even given the referee a decision to make.

Oh well Gooners, a night to forget but with the good news that Arsenal qualify for the next round as group winners.


  1. Anko says:

    It is a reality check! I know Wenger needs to manage his team but to think this team will win the competition, he must be having a laugh. We need to be more serious with the competition!

  2. gotanidea says:

    Tonight the team is really lacking the creative sparks that Sanchez usually provides. Some of the fringe players showed their “class” in the match:

    – Giroud: He is useless without good long crosses from the wings, because his pace, skills and movements are limited as usual.

    – Welbeck: He penetrated the Eau De Cologne with his runs and dribbles. Very threatening like always, but got replaced, maybe because he is injured again?

    – Wilshere: Produced many bad touches which lead to many loose balls in the first half. He doesn’t have nicer ideas than Ozil and he doesn’t possess Sanchez’s skillsets. Good enough as a squad player, but Arsenal definitely need more creative and more skillful attacking midfielder in the next season.

    – Maitland-Niles: Very good left wingback as a right footed player.

    – Chambers: Good enough as a right wingback, too bad he is slow.

    – Elneny: Produced simple passes as usual, but offered nothing special.

    – Coquelin: Like Wilshere, he produced many bad touches which lead to many loose balls in the first half. In my opinion, he is much better as a defensive midfielder than anything else.

    – The defenders and the goalkeeper: They were good and the referee was wrong for the Eau De Cologne’s penalty.

    – Nelson and Iwobi: Talented players which would improve if they keep playing with Sanchez.

    1. Vlad says:

      “Tonight the team is really lacking the creative sparks that Sanchez usually provides.” – surely you mean Ozil, not Alexis. Don’t worry, happens to the best of us.

      1. Ranjan says:

        After all this talk about how Ozil is not performing – who in our team will play the no 10 role after he is gone. Putting aside the loss for a while, the one thing which pains me is the lack of creativity in this team. With defences getting more organized we will struggle big time in creating chances once Ozil leaves

  3. Mitch Connor says:

    I’m glad we won the group. At the end of the day that was our goal BUT with our lineup we should have won this match. Very disappointing

    1. tatgooner says:

      The line up was woeful.
      Just because those players who started today have played for the first team does not make them any better.
      Coquelin and elneny are woeful.
      Chambers is extremely poor even in his best position
      Debuchy should have been sold long ago.
      mertesacker is too old for football.
      holding has been bad this season.
      He came from league 1 so should have probably begun with championship level first.
      Maitland Niles has had a poor loan spell he is not left footed can’t cross and is not a wingback.
      welbeck is just back from injury.
      Giroud has just one or two good qualities about him as a footballer.
      Everything else is crap

  4. Juhi McLovin says:

    Pathetic display but topping the group was the goal.

    It is,clear that 7-8 players,who played tonight will have to be dropped in the knock out stages.

  5. msty says:

    i hate this sky blue kit…. when ever we use it we loose ??

  6. sanmi.marvellous says:

    A phrase that never worked for us (Arsenal) is “winnable games”

  7. Salmonella says:

    Haha the Europa League is not a walk in the park like everyone thinks!
    Just because we support Arsenal doesn’t mean we should take our victories for granted.
    Next up Burnley & no one can say we’ll win the match
    Your performance on the day counts not your “big club” tag.

  8. tatgooner says:

    You see this us for those who call for ozil and sanchez to leave.
    We will be left with kolasinac and lacazette.
    If they are missing then its this.
    If we miss all four of those players.
    We will be seeing this week in week out.
    We might even be relegated

    1. reddb10 says:

      Ozil always has the first choice players around him and still only plays well once every 20 games. the sooner the lazy greedy git is gone the better.

      1. arsenal#7 says:

        If you can’t tell the difference between Ozil and Wilchair you should not be watching football.

        Pick another sport.

  9. The barrel says:

    Walcott can’t even play in this team? Maybe I’m misinformed

    1. MW supporter says:

      He’s injured.

    2. Phemy says:

      Point of correction sir, he is not injured but down with illness. Enjoying everyone’s opinion

      1. Ranjan says:

        Lol what a life – just chill and collect the fat paycheck ; turn up only 6 months before contract renewal

  10. tatgooner says:

    coquelin elneny debuchy and chambers are stealing a living

    1. Dark Pope says:

      you forgot walcott

    2. reddb10 says:

      Sad thing is we are the ones paying

    3. I love Jack but he was so slow and so one dimensional.
      Teams know he is coming off his left foot for a one two.
      Can’t see a future with us.

  11. Frasier Crane says:

    What is it with arsenal conceding penalties every bloody 2 games we concede a penalty it’s highly irritating! And our keepers couldn’t save a pen if it was hit straight at them.. something to work on in training. Happy we’re through but that was an awful performance offensively at least, this stupid tippy tappy one two football is easy to defend against its like Wenger tells his team score the perfect goal or don’t score at all.. also that Europa league team has absolutely no chance of winning the competition so Wenger need to start taking it seriously in the next round with the possibility of teams like atletico Madrid Napoli juve maybe etc but knowing Wenger he’ll stick with the same team just to defy logic.

  12. tatgooner says:

    I thought bellerin was a bad player.
    But after seeing this I now understand why he is the first name in the team sheet

    1. jogunner says:

      Why persist with Elneny and Coquelin the whole game should have at least taken off one of them for a more attack minded or creative player in the second half.No guile at all today and too much reliance on individual play to try and create something.

  13. Avenger says:

    Arsenal today a useless team with a useless coach

    1. MW supporter says:

      Ridiculous comment from someone that obviously doesn’t have a clue. Go away and watch another club.

      1. Avenger says:

        a ridiculous comment from someone that obviously
        is brainwash by the system and believes in
        fairy tales

  14. Robin Vanpayslip says:

    Arsene out!!!!

  15. Eddy Hoyte says:

    That was clear penalty…. Our defenders should know better than to jump and stretch legs after you’ve just been dribbled… Seeing it was 2 players that closed him down before he fell even made the decision much easier.
    Yea well they earned their points.
    I don’t know why you bench Iwobi and play a midfield duo (Coquelin n Elneny) that has never been creative and will never be creative when the match wasn’t a match we just wanted to defend.
    Giroud should’ve been subbed off same time as Welbeck..He was the worst on the pitch today.
    Niles had a wonderful game

  16. tatgooner says:

    to the writer

    That was a penalty any time any day of the week.
    A stone wall and an iron wall penalty

  17. ThirdManJW says:

    So can Arsenal win their first knockout match in Europe in 7/8 years now?

    1. TH14-TW14 says:

      Arsenal has won knockout games in that period against Milan, Barcelona, Bayern and Monaco. What they failed to win are ties after home and way games.

  18. Ivan says:

    I can’t believe I’m the one to say this but the los to Colone is not a disaster. We played with a weakened team so it was always 50-50 on the result.
    That said on the down side it does highlight once again that we do have some squad players who are not good enough for a top team.
    On the plus side we do have Nelson, Maitland-Niles, Macey and Nketiah who if given the chance can start to have an impact in the league and we can get rid of the failing squad players.

  19. Vlad says:

    Can’t believe the amount of hateful comments. The result of this game didn’t really matter but what did is that we rested a number of key players, and gave a bunch of fringe guys some valuable playing time. I still expected us to win the game but give credit to Cologne too. All in all, I’m somewhat disappointed but we topped the group so all is good and forgiven.

    1. Ozziegunner@Newcastle upon Hunter says:

      So much for the Europa League allowing Arsenal to play “fringe” players so that they can push for first team selection. FC Koln are the bottom team in the Bundesleague. This game is a glaring example as to why Arsenal has to strengthen the squad; who on show in this game is threatening the position of any player in the so called first team?

  20. adi says:

    Our best games is when Coquelin are on form

  21. Jeremy says:

    The display proved that we lacked depth on some departments. Certain players are just not good enough. We have some really slow players and would have been ripped apart if opponents are speed demons.

  22. Tblaze says:

    Arsenal was just toothless yesterday, just like a toothless old woman moving her food round her mouth so as to get them soft for swallowing. The only good player to watch was Maitland and mertesacker, others was short of creativity most especially Elneny. Let’s hope we improve as the competition gets going because #WINTER(Dortmond, atletico) IS COMING!

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