Arsenal had dominated the primary half however solely created one clear-cut goalscoring probability. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang missed a straightforward alternative to interrupt the impasse, the Gabon striker unable to transform Hector Bellerin‘s cross from six yards when unmarked within the field.
Arsenal’s play was neat and tidy however they all the time appeared to fall brief within the remaining third. And so they had been punished when Benfica had been gifted a penalty after Emile Smith-Rowe was adjudged to have dealt with the ball. Luis Pizzi transformed from the spot.
Aubameyang had a improbable probability to win the sport however he might solely drag his shot extensive when by way of on purpose, a transfer that summed up his, and Arsenal’s night.
The Gunners’ motion behind Aubameyang was spectacular, with Smith-Rowe, Saka and Martin Odegaard all linking effectively. Odegaard’s vary of passing particularly was excellent.
Arsenal proceed to press the self-destruct button at occasions. They performed a useless ball throughout the face of purpose earlier than the break, whereas within the second half their failure to clear the ball and concede a nook led to the penalty that noticed them go a purpose behind.
Supervisor score out of 10
6 – Mikel Arteta can have been annoyed by this consequence. His staff had the higher of the sport and appeared the extra more likely to rating, however once more he was left ruing a pricey unenforced error. Additionally, he might need launched extra tempo earlier, with a number of gamers wanting drained.
Participant scores (1-10; 10 = greatest. Gamers launched after 70 minutes get no score)
GK Bernd Leno 6 – The Arsenal stopper did not have a lot to do in the way in which of saves to make, however he definitely noticed loads of the ball. He was responsible of holding on to it for too lengthy and slowing Arsenal’s play. He might do little to cease Pizzi’s penalty.
DF Hector Bellerin 6 – The Spaniard was an attacking outlet on the suitable flank, recurrently hitting the touchline or field to get crosses into the world. His remaining ball usually let him down, although; the exception was a cross for Aubameyang’s probability within the first half.
DF David Luiz 6 – Was strong for essentially the most half and was usually in the suitable place on the proper time to defend his traces. There have been occasions he can have been grateful to Dani Ceballos for masking for him, however this was an event-free outing for the Brazilian.
DF Gabriel Magalhaes 6 – The Brazilian defender was a secure presence alongside David Luiz. He made some necessary interceptions and restricted Benfica’s attacking choices.
DF Cedric Soares 6 – Made means for Kieran Tierney within the second half, however not earlier than enjoying his half in pulling Arsenal stage. His run and subsequent cross allowed Saka to volley residence the Gunners’ equaliser.
MF Dani Ceballos 7 – The Spaniard was a strong presence within the center. He lined effectively on the again and his passing was excellent, one by way of ball particularly opening up Benfica and releasing Bellerin on the suitable. He was, nevertheless, generally responsible of taking too many touches and working into bother when a go would have been far simpler.
MF Granit Xhaka 5 – Not his best night. He performed a very useless and careless cross-field go simply earlier than the break that put his defence below pointless stress. Total there have been too many sideways passes; he merely appears to battle with out Thomas Partey alongside him.
MF Bukayo Saka 8 – Was a hazard all night. He had an effort saved earlier than the break, at which level he had been too usually responsible of drifting offside. He was handiest when slicing in from the suitable hand aspect, and after having a number of pictures on purpose he lastly discovered the online when he transformed Cedric’s teasing cross.
MF Martin Odegaard 8 – The loanee appeared superb on the ball. His link-up play with these round him was spectacular and his passing was a continuing supply of ammunition for Arsenal. One go particularly, to Saka, can have Arsenal followers dreaming of a everlasting transfer for the Norwegian.
MF Emile Smith-Rowe 6 – Hyperlink up play was as strong as ever, although he appeared drained all through. He performed in a wider place than common and he wasn’t as efficient as when he is performed by way of the center. Ran his socks off earlier than being changed.
FW Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang 6 – The skipper missed an absolute sitter following a scrumptious cross from Bellerin, and it simply gave the impression to be a type of nights for him. He missed one other one-on-one within the second half after which fluffed his traces by taking too many touches when by way of as soon as once more. Sharp, however not potent sufficient.
DF Kieran Tierney (Soares, 64) 7 – Tierney linked up effectively with Nicolas Pepe on the left-hand aspect and he did the straightforward issues effectively. Arsenal shall be delighted to have him again.
FW Nicolas Pepe (Aubameyang, 77), N/A – Seemed harmful when he got here on, although a heavy contact undid some good work from Tierney with the Gunners in a harmful place.
MF Gabriel Martinelli (Smith-Rowe, 77) N/A – Again in motion after a protracted lay-off, Martinelli did not see a lot of the ball within the closing phases.
MF Willian (Odegaard, 90) N/A – The Brazilian had little or no time to make an influence.
DF Mohamed Elneny (Ceballos, 90) N/A – Had a few touches however solely had 4 minutes of harm time on the pitch.
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