Arsenal out of Champions league after tie with PSV

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Arsenal FC 1(1) 1(2) PSV Eindhoven

Match Stats
Attendance 60073
Goalscorers for Arsenal FC Alex (og (58'))
Goalscorers for PSV Eindhoven Alex (83')
Bookings (Arsenal FC) Fabregas (Yellow (1))
Bookings (PSV Eindhoven) Fèhèr (Yellow (1))

Arsenal and PSV met at the Emirates Stadium in London earlier today for the second leg of their Champions League battle. The first match ended 1-0 for PSV, giving them the advantage from the start in this game, as a tie would be all they needed to win. Arsenal, who again were without Thiery Henry to start the football match, played a very young side as usual, although 17 year old Theo Walcott was with Henry on the subs bench. PSV played an attacking side, with Arouna Kone and Jefferson Farfan in the front.

PSV started strong out of the gate, and appeared to catch the home team by surprise with their determination. Arsenal were able to stave off the first attacks, and soon had the game under controlled and switched it into one way traffic. Fabregas and Denilson played strongly in the midfield to dictate the play for Arsenal, and soon chances began to show for the Gunners. The first fell to the Ivorian Kolo Toure, who pushed off his fellow countryman Kone, only to see his shot fly harmlessly wide of the net. More chances poured in for Arsenal, but the youngsters did not have the killer touch to finish off any clean shots on the goal. William Gallas of Arsenal had to leave the pitch to replace a contact lens, and PSV took a chance on the man advantage to press forward. Phillip Cocu put himself in a great position behind the defense, but spurned his chance as he headed the ball wide. Arsenal again pressed, as a header by Adebayor went wide, along with two volleys by Julio Baptista.

At the start of the second half, Arsenal continued to be frustrated by a combination of poor finishing and good defending by PSV. The Gunners would finally get the goal they needed after 58 minutes, thanks to an own goal by Alex. A corner by Arsenal allowed Adebayor to flick the ball on, and fortuitously it bounced off the hapless defender Alex and into the net. The goal boosted Arsenals confidence, and they continued to press the game. Arsenal nearly doubled their lead when Adebayor was sent one on one with keeper Heurelho, but his shot was directly at the keeper, and the game remained at 1-0 for the home side. As they pushed forward, Arsenal left gaps at the back, and Jefferson Farfan exposed one such gap before Denilson brought him down in the area, but no penalty was given. Henry then joined the fray from the bench, and though he didn't look completely comfortble, still managed to force Heurelho into a save with a dipping free kick. PSV would make Arsenal pay for their missed chances however, as Alex made up for his own goal and headed and Edison Mendez free kick home, tying the game and giving PSV the lead on aggregate. The aggregate loss concluded a sorrowful series of cup events for Arsenal after they lost in both the FA Cup and the Carling Cup, and now added the Champions League to the list.


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This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.