Champion League

Gnabry & Kane Deny Gunners Crucial Win

Premier League leaders Arsenal and German champions Bayern Munich played out an eye-catching 2-2 draw at the Emirates Stadium in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League quarter-final on Tuesday night (April 9). Thanks to the Bavarians’ recent struggles and the Gunners’ excellent run of form, the home side started as favorites. But two familiar faces, one friend and another foe, ensured the English side did not carry an advantage to next week’s reverse leg at the Allianz Arena.

Serge Gnabry Scores Against Old Club Arsenal, Harry Kane Lands Blow For Tottenham Hotspur

After some to-and-fro in the first 10 minutes, Arsenal put their noses in front in the 12th minute, courtesy of an excellent strike from poster boy Bukayo Saka. The Englishman penetrated the Bayern Munich box from the right side and was immediately challenged by Eric Dier and Alphonso Davies. Instead of playing the ball back into midfield, the winger spotted the gap on Dier’s right and had the quality to find the back of the net with a curling strike.

Arsenal were in dreamland, albeit momentarily, as their former youth team star Serge Gnabry equalized for the visitors just six minutes later. Leon Goretzka spotted Gnabry’s run into the box and laid the ball into his path. The German showed superb composure to beat the onrushing goalkeeper under pressure.

Eleven minutes later, Bayern got a superb chance to pull ahead after the referee pointed to the spot for Gabriel’s tackle on Leroy Sane inside the Arsenal box. Inevitably, Harry Kane stepped up to take the penalty kick and fired Bayern in front, landing a blow on Arsenal’s local rivals Tottenham Hotspur’s behalf.

The Gunners pushed and pushed for the equalizer, finally securing it in the 75th minute, thanks to a brilliant piece of play by Gabriel Jesus. The former Manchester City man danced around the edge of the area to open up a bit of room before feeding the ball to Leandro Trossard. The Belgian made no mistake in tucking it away from close range.

Bayern Munich could have won the game in the 90th minute, but the post came in the way to deny substitute Kingsley Coman the winner. In injury time, Arsenal appealed vociferously for a penalty as Saka went down under Manuel Neuer’s challenge. The referee, however, refused to award a spot kick.

Bayern Munich Were Statistically Better In Champions League Quarter-Final 1st Leg

Despite being all over the place in the Bundesliga this season (16 points behind leaders Bayer Leverkusen), Bayern Munich brought their ‘A-game’ in the UEFA Champions League quarter-final first leg at the Emirates Stadium. They moved the ball around quite well, created big goalscoring opportunities, and rarely made any mistakes at the back.

On Tuesday night, Thomas Tuchel’s side had eight shots, created three big chances, and hit the post once, ending the game with an xG of 2.08. Mikel Arteta’s team had 13 shots but had a lower 1.22 xG. Bayern also delivered more accurate long balls (28 vs 10), made more interceptions (6 vs 5), and performed a lot more clearances (18 vs 4) at the Emirates Stadium.

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