Arsenal: Ospina, Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal, Xhaka, Cazorla, Ozil, Iwobi, Walcott, Alexis
Subs: Cech, Gibbs, Gabriel, Oxlade-Chamberlain, The Jeff, Elneny, Lucas
Arsenal fashioned a host of chances and had two first half Theo Walcott goals to show as they beat FC Basel 2-0 at the Emirates this evening.
Arsene Wenger made two changes from the team that beat Chelsea 3-0 (haha Costa) last weekend, with David Ospina coming in for Petr Cech in goal and Granit Xhaka starting in place of the injured Francis Coquelin.
There was an early sight of goal for Alexis Sanchez after his smart movement from a quick free kick, but the defender got back to rob him. Nacho Monreal was the first to test the keeper but saw his effort saved before the Gunners took an 8th minute lead.
Santi Cazorla found Alexis down the left hand side, he lofted a cross into the area and Walcott, running onto it, scored with a determined close range header. 1-0.
Arsenal were on top in midfield where Xhaka looked ever more comfortable. Basel had their first chance of the game when Suchy headed wide from a 15th minute corner, before Walcott blocked a shot on the edge of the box.
The England man was in the mood to do more at the other end of the pitch though, and in the 26th minute doubled the lead. Arsenal worked the ball through midfield, Walcott took it on, played a 1-2 with Alexis then drilled a shot in to the bottom corner off the far post. 2-0.
It might have been more just minutes later when brilliant football from Walcott and Bellerin found space down the right. The ball came to Cazorla in the box, he fed Alexis whose chipped shot was saved. It would have been a fantastic goal.
More superb football saw Walcott create a chance for Bellerin which the keeper came out quickly to save, and seconds after that Mesut Ozil had a brilliant opportunity to get on the scoresheet but poked wide with his left foot when maybe he should have used his right.
Alexis had another one saved after more excellent build-up, and in truth should have put the game out of sight before the half-time break. There was another chance for Ozil after Alexis crossed to the back post, and found the German’s run, but he put it into the side netting, ensuring the two goal lead at the break.
The second period began with plenty of Arsenal possession as we looked to extend the lead. Walcott was caught offside after an Alexis pass, and the Chilean almost replicated his goal against Chelsea (haha Costa) at the weekend when he robbed the defender. This time he tried to find Ozil at the back post but saw it intercepted.
Iwobi toe-bogged one just wide after racing through from midfield, Cazorla should have found a better final pass after more superb play set him free down the left, before Ospina was forced into his first real action, tipping over Bjarnason’s shot from the edge of the Arsenal box.
The Icelandic international should have scored moments later when the ball came to him at the back post, but he skewed his shot over the bar. It wasn’t the worst chance missed, because Alexis topped it not long afterwards. Cazorla fed Walcott, he pulled it back for the Chilean who put it wide from about 8 yards out – he really should have scored.
Arsene Wenger made his first changes in the 70th minute bringing on Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Mohamed Elneny for Iwobi and Walcott, and 5 minutes later gave Kieran Gibbs a run-out in place of Monreal.
Basel made some changes themselves that I don’t care about enough to go into, and the game itself went a bit flat as it headed into the final ten minutes.
Some nifty work between Alexis and Gibbs sparked some OLEs, and the Arsenal striker won a free kick on the edge of the box when he was clipped after a mazy run. Cazorla hit it into the wall.
Ospina made another good save when Basel found too much space, Oxlade-Chamberlain sjhould have done better when he rounded the keeper, and the Basel stopper made another save seconds later from corner stopping a goal-bound Alexis effort with his goolies.
It was the last opportunity of the game, there was a lot to be encouraged about, and it was a well deserved win for Wenger’s team.
I think we’re onto something here…..
No obvious weaknesses in this team at the moment … quite scary …
I think I will save the passing from tonight and from the win at the Weekend over C*ntsea, in the porn collection and masturbate to it.
Perhaps the players will provide you with a nice topless selfie to masturbate over instead.
You don’t get it guys. Its not abt masturbating to the players. Its the passing I am talking about.
I got that I was just taking the piss 🙂
You have keybord on toilet?
Whatever it is, it must not stop. Onwards and upwards. Bliss.
Is it me or does Ozil seem to often be in that second striker type role ala Bergkamp? Are we seeing a shift back to 4-4-2? He is definitely getting into scoring opportunities very often these days, which is fantastic.
I can never quite work out what the formation is. Sometimes it looks like 4 4 2 with Sanchez and Walcott up front but it’s shifting constantly.
I think our front four’s movement is just so good atm that when we’re in attack there isn’t a set formation. Thats something that we definitely don’t have with Giroud in the side. It’d be interesting to see what happens when Ramsey is back and he’s used out wide.
It’s almost as if Wenger carefully selects players based on how well they will play together.
Funny how world class managers do world class things like that…anyway #wengerout!
Basel keeper was immense!
or were our forwards a bit crap tonight
If the keeper is prepared to put his bollocks on the line to make a save, give him the credit.
Don’t be silly all those chances could not have been clear cut cos Giroud was not on the pitch! It was clear we missed him in the box.
That being said we do at times have a talent of making mediocre keepers look world class.
the one he saved with his nuts was my fav. 😀
I really felt that
Every male Gooner felt that.
😀 That was Nut a save
Balls of steel.
Beautiful football in the first half and great composure in the second. A very well controlled victory for us tonight, although I suspect some of the team may have been a little disappointed by the scoreline. You’ll get them next time, Alexis!
It’s like someone turned on a switch in this Arsenal side. Whatever it is, it’s working!!
It’s the switch for…
The work off the ball is what is winning us these games so comfortably and Theo is a big part of that!
Not sure but I suspect the work on the ball might have something to do with it too…
You know it’s a great performance when the only thing you can complain about is that we didn’t score enough goals. Good stuff especially from Theo. Reallt impressed by him and glad that he’s proving his doubters wrong (including me).
Agreed, in pre-season I said I was disappointed that he seemed disinterested. He’s certainly up for it now and it’s really great to see.
So happy it’s Walcott with rather than 1) with someone else
2) Vardy with us
To me – Santi was on par with Theo tonight.
Key passes, most tackles, most touches, most dribbles…
Blog’s quicker than Bellerin. Nice nice nice!
for the amount of play in which we were exceptionally good, there’s still an equal amount of time in which we revert to the placid and wasteful way we played most of last season. should have scored more but we never seem to manage it, not unreasonable to say we could have had ten if we were better tonight.
We weren’t placid at all, it’s just our finishing was a bit poor at times. The intensity was always there in the build up play
Bulk of the wasted chances were by Alexis and we can all agreed he only had one of those games where the ball won’t just go in no matter how had u tried. He was still the best player on the pitch for me.
I thin I Walcott, amazingly, was the best player.
“Not unreasonable to say we could have had ten”. Uh….
Good performance and result but chances going begging! Add some efficiency and we could do someone some real damage
Mr. Wenger, i think you finally have the team that you wanted. Hats off to you, sir!
At this rate, the League is ours, please just ensure you beat sissy Maureen, Pep and Spuds home and away along the way.
Ospina looked bored today!!
Well that 1st half was organic.
It was both.
Walcott, changed man, changed player. Fully deserved for his hard work. We played excellent today and could’ve and should’ve scored more. On we go to Burnley. #COYG #InArseneWeTrust
really think we would have won in Paris if Theo had played
I also liked what he said in the post match interview, “It was a good win but this game will be forgotten now and we move onto Sunday.” Let’s keep this run going.
Be afraid, Burnley. Be very afraid.
We are very good right now.
Yiiiii fucking haaaaaa!
Walcott and the team are stepping it up.
That was a joy to watch. Could have been 7-0. This new system is absolutely purring with Alexis, Iwobi and Theo up front.
I dont believe me falling in love with Theo Walcott….. Hey I love him men
I’d been away so that’s the first game I’ve seen live. Had been reading Walcott’s comments with a dump truck of salt but he has legit changed his attitude, even more than contract time. I would seriously love it if he kept that up and just be’d the player he clearly can be. No let up Sunday lads. COYG.
Is bellerin a right back right?
Walcott is a goal scoring Winger than a striker and he is good at that.
Iwobi sounds like ” It’ll be” .And whatever he tries with football, iwobi.
Incredible performance, but we should’ve been more clinical. Only bad note. We’ve been absolutely superb and seem to have found a settled first 11. I had hoped Lucas Perez would start, but looks like Monreal had a knock as his sub didn’t seem planned.
Ox is so low on confidence. He needs to look to Theo and get his groove back. He’s too talented to be so low on confidence.
Let’s go get a result against Burnley and keep building momentum.
Agreed about the Ox, but he did show some promise against Nottingham Forest. I’d consider starting him against Burnley and giving Theo a rest.
Final 20-30 minutes reminded me of the Chelsea teams of a decade ago. Nasty c***s though they were, they had a great instinct about when to switch off and conserve energy and start thinking about the next game. A mature, measured performance, sprinkled with bursts of exhilarating attacking football.
Those Chelsea teams never pass-and-moved like THAT!!
Walcott is not on fire. I could get used to this. Pity we have to wait until Sunday to see them play again! COYG.
Yes he is!! 🙂
We shall beat PSG and we will go far in this competition
I actually got a headache before this match. The football we were playing was so wonderful I have no headache now. Sensational game. Alexis’s finishing was off but he played fantastic. Iwobi is becoming everything we hoped Ox would be. And I would like to see by the numbers There were chance after chance. and an applause for theo.
Fantastic performance!…a very mature performance, controlled possession, assured and disciplined defending, and we look dangerous every time we go forward. The scoreline is really very flattering to Basel, We could have scored loads more.
I don’t know what it is, but this team is just unbelievably good right now. Solid back line, creative and yet tough midfield, and a very pacy and dangerous front line that is virtually unplayable when they turn it on!…If it’s a light bulb that’s just gone on in their collective head, Arsene, please keep that bulb permanently ON!
Our pace down the right hand side of the pitch…fucking awesome!!
How to be happy and frustrated at the same time. Happy we won convincingly, frustrated we didn’t score more.
Sensational stuff from the boys today, some of the best football and link up play I’ve seen for a while. Despite his consistent spew concerning Arsenal I was actually quite impressed with Michael Owens post match punditry, had some good points in respect to Arsenals play and how our game is suiting and bringing out the best in Walcott, it often seems fashionable to bash Arsenal but with performances like this and those that have proceeded we seem to be earning a lot of plaudits, let’s keep our heads down and take game by game and I think we may… Read more »
So turns out we had a really good player all along who just couldn’t be arsed. Thanks for the last 10 years Theo. Thanks, thansk a lot.
Lets look forward to the next 4 years from him.
Oh don’t get me wrong, it’s great and let’s enjoy it. But doesn’t anyone else find his comments completely bizarre? And why only now has Arsene pulled him to one side to say he needs to give more? Haven’t most Arsenal fans being saying this for the majority of his tenure? It will be incredible if he can keep it up – if we have a ‘wide’ palyer who can get 15 goals or more plus assists that could very well win us the league, but it raises some serious questions as to how he has been managed over the… Read more »
Wenger out then?
Haha brilliant! Go home Paul you’re drunk
Style & Steel
Those “#WengerOut” posters must be awfully dusty by now…
Michael Owen is a cunt
was, is, always will be
Michael said that after our next two games we could start thinking about topping the group. Newsflash Mike!!…we are topping the group now!
It’s not like he ever headed the ball a lot and received a brain injury, but it seems like it?? 🙂
This and the chelsea performance made me think of the times when we used to start blazing fast at highbury, go 2 or 3 goals and just sit out the match passing around. We look so good attacking and suddenly with Mustafi coming in and The boss we have a very good cb pairing with style and steel.
Chopped Basel anyone?
Sliced these mofos’s open like we was Rama from The Raid. Should have been 8 at least.
Loving this intensity and speed fully personified by Theo Walcott right now..I have been a big critic of his but nothing makes me happier than a player finding his way and proving me and every other critic wrong..Hopefully this becomes the norm for him.
I liked how balanced we look, similar to Chelsea game we were able to sit back a little, we lost some intensity and tempo but remained solid and still carved out 4 or 5 golden opportunities.
Could, not should. But I know what you’re saying.
AS7 tried over and over again. Unlucky today but it seems he will score a ton of goals this season.
Jesus!!!! Oh I fucking love Wengerball… hoodledy doodledy dooooooo… Woooohooo
Good job Alexis isn’t a sex god! he’d have been slagged off to the nth degree for tonight’s misses if he was!
It’s amazing what a difference a few weeks make. A few weeks ago a lot of us were bemoaning this Arsenal team, couldn’t see its identity/style. Having missed out on a world class striker AW searched for internal solutions and a lot of us were sceptical, disappointed, angry even. Tonight I saw football that I don’t think any of our rivals are capable of, Alexis should have scored at least two but their keeper played a blinder. If we can keep this level of performance going we are serious contenders, and perhaps we owe AW a massive collective apology. That… Read more »
That was an awesome performance from a squad that is firing on all cylinders. Walcott was simply brilliant. Sanchez was very unlucky to be robbed a couple of times. MOTM might really have been the Fawlties goalkeeper – if not for him it could easily have been 6-0.
We look to have a pretty settled first choice XI now, and I see us going very, very far in all competitions this season.
Let’s not overreact with Walcott. It’s 2-3 games of a 10 year career. All the recent stuff about him finally ‘getting it’ is bullocks. Only an idiot would fail to realize that it takes effort and tenacity to succeed in this league. How could anyone be on the same team as coquelein and Alexis and fail to realize the importance of commitment, chasing down balls, pressing, getting stuck in, etc. Hate to be a downer but I predict an injury soon for Walcott… I have no faith that he can continue this form
i’m blaming the time difference for your ignorance…maybe you don’t know he scored two goals tonight and was brilliant….again…..i’m guessing you didn’t get the memo…
Scoring two goals in a UCL group stage match does not an arsenal legend make. He needs to be consistently good for an extended period for me to change my attitude towards him and forget the past. Perhaps its because I lack English bias, but he had been really bad too many times (too many times recently in the first couple games this season and through the end of last year.) And I dont need a memo, or an article, or a soundbite in a post match interview to form an opinion. I’ve watched the games. If his improvement is… Read more »
Alexis and Walcott.. they building a great relationship on the park
Yes the obvious delight on Alexis face when Theo got a second goal! Priceless!
Another wonderful performance from Alex Iwobi.
Is he the new David Rocastle?
Socks down. Head up. Flying.
A great result and fantastic confidence at the moment.
Walcott continues to reap reward.
Alexis unlucky but immense shift put in.
We should have been 6 -nil up. Still some work to do. We were efficient enough but not murderous.
But team is starting to tick.
Murderous sounds good. Let’s go for that.
As much as I’d like to see Perez get a chance to play while Giroud is not 100% I don’t see how Wenger is going to move Sanchez out of the striker spot with the form he is on now. You see some of what we miss when Giroud is in there with the movement of Sanchez and how it opens up so many things. Not trying to criticize Giroud as he does well with the style he plays, but I think we are a more complete team with the interchanging of players throughout the four attacking positions, certainly more… Read more »
Que sara sara, Alexander Iwobi, your future is ours to see, que sara sara.
That’s balls out Fukn Excellent!
You don’t chop Basel as it oxidises, you have to tear it. We tore them a new one today
Guess what kept the score at 2-0? Deez nuts. I’ll see myself out.
thanks god we sold theo last summer and replace him with this awesome wingman , anyone know his name?