Matchwinner Kieran Tierney was pleased to get on the scoresheet for the first time this season as his first half strike against FC Zurich secured Arsenal a place in the Europa League last 16.
On a night when the Gunners struggled to for cutting edge, the Scotland international produced a fine finish in the first half, bouncing home a left-footed volley through a crowded penalty box.
His celebration was as venomous as his strike. Swinging his fists and roaring into the damp November night, he looked like a man releasing his recent frustration at being in and out of the side.
“It’s been coming – I’ve not scored in a while!” he told Arsenal.com afterwards.
“I’ve been getting closer in the last few games and I’d just like to tell the boys it’s about time I scored.”
A, B, C or D? Who scored the best goal? ⚽️🔥@Heineken | #UELGOTW | #UEL
— UEFA Europa League (@EuropaLeague) November 3, 2022
Having created, and squandered, chances in the first half, Arsenal lacked fluidity after the break and looked nervy in the final 15 minutes when they opted to contain their opponents rather than go for the jugular.
Reflecting on the performance, Tierney said: “Job done is how you’d describe it. We’d have liked it to be more comfortable but it was never going to be easy.
“They came here with a lot to play for as well. But we dug deep and we defended well at the end. They put a lot of pressure on us.
“It’s massive for us [coming top]. Even before we started, that was always our target. In February we don’t need to play a certain round so we get more rest and recovery. It’s been a tough start to the season with all these games. It’s a bonus for sure.”
Tierney was rightly selected as man of the match by broadcasters and fans alike and he may well retain the left-back slot for Sunday’s match at Chelsea with Takehiro Tomiyasu picking up an injury and Oleksandr Zinchenko only just returning to full fitness.
“As soon as we finished this game, it’s Chelsea straight away,” said Tierney.
“We know it’s going to be a tough game. We’ve not got a lot of recovery but the boys will be ready for it, 100 per cent.”
He’s a good lad
I voted for him, please do the same! If we can keep Tony Adams in Strictly then we can do anything!
KT deserves respect for the way he’s handled himself and remained focused in the last few weeks after being dropped in the Premier League, he’ll thrive off this competition and become a stronger player for it. Amazing having this much depth and quality! COYG
Luckily he is in really good form now and we will need him on Sunday with Tomiyasu surely out (when is Zinchenko back?). Other than Tierney and Tomiyasu (who are substitutes when Zinchenko is healthy, but both have been long time starters for us) we have so little depth (though at some point will get ESR back) in players that can keep the level of play up when they come in. Nketiah has some attributes that can make an impact in certain games when he comes in, but we are a far less fluid team when he plays compared to… Read more »
Love his passion. You can tell it’s been coming for a few games, well in KT!
I think there has been some much talk this season about what KT can’t do relative to other players, almost as if what he can do doesn’t really matter.
Probably in a minority but I would still have him as first choice at LB.
That was a bullet of a shot, Tierney.
Serious question. Can I buy a club shirt redone the Tierney way?
How much extra will it cost?
Yes. Button the shirt to the top and tuck it tightly into your shorts.
A great goal and well deserved. The problem was, and has been before during this season, that we had to use almost all our first-choice players at some time during the game to ensure the result against pretty average opposition really. Another indication of the lack of strength/depth in the squad, I think. Compare that, say, with City in their recent CL game (against far tougher opposition) where they didn’t have Haaland and other of their first eleven playing but still won well. We must try to strengthen our squad in January if we can, although it won’t be that… Read more »
Good bhoy! 👏👏👏