No one can defy the law of nature, not even footballers.
Alexis Sanchez has been the brightest spark in the Arsenal team this season, and we may say that he was the reason the Gunners survived the roller coaster of the first four months.
But now he looks jaded and against Monaco, he could hardly do anything right. Every attack seemed to break down when the ball got to him, even after he switched from right to left and finally center.
The tangle for the supposed penalty was especially frustrating as he could have stayed on his feet to continue the attack. Maybe it is time to let him sit on the bench to rest and recover.
- Nearly redeemed
Unsurprisingly, most of the Arsenal players, if not all, were up for the challenge at the Stade Louis II, but no one was up for it more than Olivier Giroud.
Giroud was heavily blamed for the failure at the Emirates and had it on him to repair the damage.
Two failed headers very early in the game looked as though we where up for a repeat of the first leg, but a well taken goal on his right foot put the miracle firmly on course to happen.
In truth, it could have been wholly completed in that first half with Welbeck’s cross that came off his knee. Then there was the chance from Cazorla’s free kick which he probably would have left for Alexis to tap in.
- Walcott has a lot to do to win Arsene’s trust
Theo Walcott is not a first choice Arsenal player anymore.
He is not going to replace Giroud as a striker and that’s not just because the Frenchman is in blistering goal scoring form, neither is he going to get picked ahead of Welbeck on the wings.
He nearly scored against Monaco, but what else could he offer to stake a claim for a starting spot?
- Should Wenger move for Abdennour?
Monaco’s Kondogbia was excellent in the first leg, as was Kurzawa in Tuesday night’s second leg clash.
But overall, no Monaco player was as immense as Tunisian center-half, Aymen Abdennour. The 25-year old was rock solid through the 180-minute course of the two-legged tie and would seem a player with the sort of aggression and steel that would complement the Gunners’ attacking silk.
- Do the job in the first leg
Arsenal will finish in the top four again, get into the Champions League next season and, with the new seeding system, get a tough group in which they will finish second.
Hopefully when that first leg tie with Barcelona, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich or Monaco comes up in February 2016, there will be more wisdom to deal with it rationally.
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