Dynamo Kiev 1 – 1 Arsenal – Match report
It was a game that Arsenal had many chances to win, but in the end were almost lucky to grab the point in the closing minutes.
Here’s how Arsenal lined up :
Sagna (Eboue 78), Toure, Gallas, Clichy,
Walcott, Fabregas, Song (Bendtner 70), Denilson,
Van Persie (Vela 83), Adebayor
You will notice that Nasri was absent, still recovering from the injury he picked up whilst away on international duty with France.
It started in a somewhat nervous fashion, but it was Arsenal who created all the chances in the first half, yet failing to score. Dynamo Kiev did not show a lot of threat going forward, with the exception of Bangoura, who showed a lot of pace and a willingness to shoot.
It was perhaps a sign of the young gun’s lack of experience that they did not capitalise on the pressure they put on the Kiev goal in the first two thirds of the game.
Disaster struck for Arsenal when the referee gifted Kiev a penalty, when forward Vukojevic tangled with Sagna in the box, Bangoura converting from the spot kick. I’m not going to mince my words here, Arsenal were robbed. There was no way in Kiev that was a penalty; from the replay you could clearly see that Vukojevic had his arm around Sagna, pulling the defender over and playing for the penalty.
However the referee did not see it that way and Arsenal were in deep trouble.
The dodgy penalty seemed to inspire the home side, as Kiev, previously with hardly a shot on goal, started to get into the game, spurred on by the home fans. The Ukrainian team began to have a lot more of the ball as Arsenal attempted to search for an equaliser, and were increasingly effective in midfield, putting a lot of pressure on Arsenal. Indeed Denilson, who has been surprising myself and many an Arsenal fan with his recent excellent form looked swamped by Kiev’s Aliev in midfield.
But Arsenal pressed on for an equaliser, piling men forward into the Kiev half. Chances came and went before Gallas finally tapped in from a Theo Walcott cross to rescue the point for Arsenal in the 88th minute.
Before the game I thought that I would happy with a point from what was bound to be a tricky away tie. I guess in the end it evened out, but I would have been livid if Arsenal had lost, I cannot bear to see Arsenal lose such important games through dodgy refereeing decisions.
Next up Arsenal have another long trip to a cold northern wasteland (only kidding!) as they travel to Bolton on Saturday in the Premiership.
So, what did you think of the game? Was it a penalty? Should the referee have taken more action against the Kiev players kicking lumps out of Walcott? Have you say in the comments…