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Teenager inspires Arsenal against Olympiacos

Published: Wednesday 28 September 2011, 22.40CET
Arsenal FC 2-1 Olympiacos FC
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 18, and André Santos scored their first goals for Arsenal as the Gunners held on for victory in north London.
by Trevor Huggins
from Arsenal Stadium

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Match statistics

ArsenalOlympiacos

Goals scored2
 
1
Attempts on target5
 
7
Attempts off target2
 
6
Corners5
 
6
Offsides3
 
3
Fouls committed15
 
15
Yellow cards2
 
3
Red cards0
 
0
Possession (%)55
 
45

Standings

Last updated: 21/05/2012 17:30 CET

Legend:

P: Played   
Pts: Points   
 
Published: Wednesday 28 September 2011, 22.40CET

Teenager inspires Arsenal against Olympiacos

Arsenal FC 2-1 Olympiacos FC
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 18, and André Santos scored their first goals for Arsenal as the Gunners held on for victory in north London.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrated his UEFA Champions League debut with the opening goal as Arsenal FC won 2-1 against Olympiacos FC in Group F.

The 18-year-old's eighth-minute strike and another from André Santos had Arsenal cruising before David Fuster pulled one back for the Greek title holders just before the half-hour, throwing the contest wide open. Olympiacos would have been good value for a point for what was an impressive performance, only for the woodwork to deny them in the second half.

On an unseasonably warm night, both sides were looking to better matchday one results when Arsenal drew 1-1 at Borussia Dortmund and Olympiacos lost 1-0 to Olympique de Marseille. However, the stakes did not prevent Arsenal from putting Robin van Persie on the bench and handing Oxlade-Chamberlain his competition debut.

The move soon paid off when Alex Song floated a long ball forward and Oxlade-Chamberlain shrugged off two challenges before steering a left-foot shot past Franco Costanzo and in off the post.

The goal stung Olympiacos into action and Arsenal needed Mikel Arteta to clear off the line to deny Rafik Djebbour in a goalmouth melee a few minutes later. Just as the Greek side were building real momentum, though, a swift passing move put Santos through and when his pass to Marouane Chamakh was blocked, the Brazilian left-back pounced to arrow in an angled shot in the 20th minute.

The scoreline belied the fact the visitors were playing some clever football and their reward was not long in coming. Playmaker Ariel Ibagaza collected the ball from a well-worked corner on the left and crossed for the unmarked Fuster, whose downward header from around the penalty spot gave Wojciech Szczęsny no chance.

Back in the game, Olympiacos came out even more determined after the break, with Ibagaza superbly providing the link between midfield and Djebbour and Kevin Mirallas pushing forward. At the other end, Arsenal struggled to create clear-cut opportunities with former Aston Villa FC player Olof Mellberg keeping a close watch on Chamakh.

Mellberg's fellow defender Vassilis Torossidis nearly struck a superb equaliser midway through the half, only for his curling left-foot shot from the edge of the area to dip onto the bar. Two chances fell to Andrey Arshavin on the break to make it 3-1 but he failed to find a way through and his side settled for the narrower victory.

Last updated: 27/11/12 15.37CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2012/matches/round=2000263/match=2007595/postmatch/report/index.html#teen+sparks+arsenal+triumph

Quotes

  • Pat Rice

    Read more"You can't turn around and say we had all of the game because that would be unfair; we are very, very happy with the three points"

  • Ernesto Valverde

    Read more"My players, despite falling behind so early, performed with confidence and did everything they could to try and overturn the scoreline"

Lineups

arsenal

Arsenal

olympiacos

Olympiacos

13
SzczęsnyWojciech Szczęsny (GK)
17
CostanzoFranco Costanzo (GK)
3
SagnaBacary Sagna
4
MellbergOlof Mellberg
4
MertesackerPer Mertesacker
7
IbagazaAriel Ibagaza
7
RosickýTomáš Rosický (C)
Yellow Card34
8
FejsaLjubomir Fejsa
8
ArtetaMikel Arteta
Yellow Card77
10
DjebbourRafik Djebbour
Yellow Card84
11
André SantosAndré Santos
Goal20
14
MirallasKevin Mirallas
Substitution75
15
Oxlade-ChamberlainAlex Oxlade-Chamberlain
Goal8
Substitution68
19
David FusterDavid Fuster
Goal27
Yellow Card70
Substitution80
17
SongAlex Song
20
HolebasJosé Holebas
Yellow Card49
23
ArshavinAndrey Arshavin
Substitution83
23
MarcanoIván Marcano
26
FrimpongEmmanuel Frimpong
31
OrbaizPablo Orbaiz
Substitution75
29
ChamakhMarouane Chamakh
Substitution71
35
TorosidisVasilis Torosidis (C)

Substitutes

21
FabiańskiŁukasz Fabiański (GK)
42
MegyeriBalázs Megyeri (GK)
9
Park Ju-YoungPark Ju-Young
3
ModestoFrançois Modesto
Substitution75
10
Van PersieRobin van Persie
Substitution71
9
PantelićMarko Pantelić
Substitution80
16
RamseyAaron Ramsey
Substitution68
21
A. PapadopoulosAvraam Papadopoulos
25
JenkinsonCarl Jenkinson
77
MakounJean Makoun
28
GibbsKieran Gibbs
Substitution83
92
PotouridisGiannis Potouridis
39
CoquelinFrancis Coquelin
93
AbdounDjamel Abdoun
Substitution75

Coach

Boro Primorac (SRB) Ernesto Valverde (ESP)

Referee

Carlos Velasco Carballo (ESP)

Assistant referees

Roberto Alonso (ESP), Juan Yuste (ESP)

Fourth official

Carlos Del Cerro (ESP)

Additional assistant referees

Carlos Gómez (ESP), Javier Estrada (ESP)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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