By Walter Broeckx
Some changes compared to last weekend. Cech as expected in goal in the Europa League. Xhaka also returned from injury and starts in the place of Torreira who drops to the bench. Aubameyang was on the beach.
Arsenal team at the start: Cech, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal, Maitland-Niles, Guendouzi, Xhaka, Kolasinac, Iwobi, Mkhitaryan, Lacazette.
On the beach: Leno, Lichtsteiner, Elneny, Torreira, Suarez, Aubameyang, Nketiah.
Almost a perfect start for Arsenal with a good attack on the left flank and Kolasinac with a perfect cross to the completely unmarked Mkhitaryan but he shoots against the keeper from close range. That should have been a goal for Arsenal within 2 minutes. Mlhitaryan with a good cross but nobody at the end of it. Xhaka is being booked for a very light foul. Iwobi with a shot but the keeper saves. A first shot from Bate Borisov but Cech saves it. 0-0 after 15 minutes. Arsenal had the ball in the net but it had gone out of play before so a correct decision from the referee.
Lacazette at the end of a cross from Kolasinac but the French striker heads it over. Guendouzi claiming a handball when he puts in a cross but the refs see no wrong. Bate Borisov with a dangerous cross but Kolasinac with an important block. A bit later a good attack on the right flank of Bate and the cross is flicked towards goal but the ball hits the goal post. Guendouzi tries to find Lacazette and finds him but out striker can’t control the ball well enough. Still 0-0 after 30 minutes.
Mkhitaryan with a good cross but Lacazette can’t control the ball. Mustafi with a dangerous ball that ends up in front of Kolasinac but he blazes his shot wide. Bate get a free kick at the right hand side and the cross is headed in the Arsenal goal over Cech. 1-0 with a goal from Dragun after 44 minutes. Arsenal having most of the game and most of the ball but no end product. 1-0 at the half time break.
Arsenal begin with some good attacks but Bate can keep Arsenal from scoring. An inviting cross from Iwobi but Maitland-Niles and Mkhitaryan both get in each others way and the ball goes out. Lacazette puts the ball in the net but he was just offside so the goal was rightly ruled off. Cech with a save on a bouncing shot. Arsenal still 1-0 down after 60 minutes.
Xhaka and Matiland-Niles come off after 68 minutes and Torreira and Aubameyang come on. Kolasinac with a shot from a difficult angle but the ball went wide. After 74 minutes Suarez entered the field and Kolasinac went off. Still 1-0 behind after 75 minutes.
Lacazette being held and he punches towards his oppenent and gets a red card. Arsenal keep on playing forward but creating almost nothing. Arsenal lose 1-0 against Bate Borisov. What a difference a year makes.
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