Arsenal came into the fixture with two away goal advantage over AC Milan. The fixture finished in Arsenal’s favor at the scoreline of 5-1 on aggregate and 3-1 for the night. AC Milan were not on their game over the course of both the legs where as Arsenal did pretty good to go ahead. Arsene Wenger’s men ball control and passing was exceptional – and all credits to the team performance as Arsenal are into the Quarter Finals.
Match Report: Arsenal vs AC Milan
LEG 2 at Emirates Stadium
How both the teams lined up for the fixture?
Arsenal: Ospina; Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal; Ramsey, Xhaka, Wilshere; Ozil, Mkhitaryan, Welbeck
Subs: Cech, Iwobi, Chambers, Maitland-Niles, Kolasinac, Elneny, Nketiah
AC Milan: Donnarumma; Borini, Bonucci, Romagnoli, Rodriguez; Kessie, Calhanoglu, Montolivo, Suso; Cutrone, Andre Silva
Subs: Storari, Bonaventura, Kalinic, Zapata, Biglia, Musacchio, Locatelli
It was a exciting forty-five minutes which just became ‘deadly’ before players went into the tunnel. Arsenal started the game with keeping the ball comfortably – with possession they even had considerable chances to score just before Hakan Calhanoglu netted a superb goal. It was a perfectly taken shoot from around the edge of penalty box and David Ospina was never going to save that.
Arsenal were straight back into the game as Danny Welbeck netted a controversial penalty. Danny Welbeck apparently tripped his legs receiving the pass from Mkhitaryan without too much contact from Ricardo Rodriguez. It was unlucky for the Swiss full back as Welbeck converted from the spot with a calm head.
The game was again from ‘Where it stared’ as Emirates had gone loud again.
The boys from Italy were getting quite frustrated with the proceedings – earning themselves three yellow cards in space of few minutes. Just before half-time whistle – Henrikh Mkhitaryan had a chance to extend the lead with a ‘brilliantly’ back-heeled pass from Danny Welbeck but the header just went wide.
Even Jack Wilshere came close to scoring as his effort from out of the box could have gone in but a finger tip save from Gianluigi Donnarumma.
Danny Welbeck was the stand-out performer of the half, you could see him grinding to regain possession, creating chances, constantly pressuring the Milan’s defence. Laurent Koscielny was replaced by Calum Chambers early into the game as the French international limps off early after missing out on Watford fixture last weekend.
Arsenal started the half comfortably with possession and control over the pace of the game. Nothing much happened until the seventieth minute where Granit Xhaka most likely sealed the contest with a long-range shot. Gianluigi Donnarumma dived to the left looking to parry the ball but it bounces off him into the net.
As soon as the goal is scored, the visitors have a couple of close chances but were unlucky not to score. You could say, Lady Luck have been on Arsenal side on the course of both the fixtures(nothing to take away from their efforts, just an opinion).
Emirates is on their highest vocals singing songs about Mesut Ozil as the Gooners could breath a sigh of relief after a cushion of lead. On the other side, Milan fans are singing and clapping – trying to enjoy themselves as the encounter looks to have been shoot out by the Gunners.
Arsenal score another goal with five minutes to official time, as substitute Mohammed Elneny gives a defence splitting pass to Jack Wilshere on the left hand side – Wilshere does well to chip the ball in the danger area where Aaron Ramsey heads it straight to Donnarumma but Danny Welbeck meets the deflection to head it home.
That is it!, as the Swedish ref Jonas Eriksson blows the final whistle as Arsenal beat AC Milan at the scoreline of 3-1 on the night and 5-1 on aggregate. Arsenal will have its name in the ball for a draw of European quarter finals for the first time in Eight years tomorrow.
Who said What:
Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere, speaking to BT Sport: “We needed it. We set the level last week in Milan. It was about getting the job done tonight and being professional. We didn’t start well but it woke us up. They got a good goal early on and made us work for it. We are happy to be through to the next round and we will see who we get. I hope so. When we looked at the draw before, AC Milan was probably not one of the teams we fancied but we showed we can play against the top teams in Europe.”
Arsenal goalscorer Granit Xhaka speaking to BT Sport: “I am happy I scored and I could help the team. We have won the last three games and we need to keep going.”
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger: “It’s much better, we needed that to recover from our results. It shows how the team has responded. We had a difficult game but in the end we won it. It was an open game. We played backwards a bit too much in the first half to protect the result. We played a very good side. We have to improve defensively, but overall we are team with technical quality which is more offense-minded. We struggle a bit more when we have to defend. We finished the game more compact and more solid. We would certainly want to avoid Atletico Madrid, but we will see, we have no influence over that.”