Post-Match Report

Match report: Standard Liege 2-2 Arsenal

Royal Standard de Liège -

Stade Maurice Dufrasne
Europa League
Europa League
  Royal Standard de Liège
      
              Bastien (47)
               Amallah (69)
          
   crest
Royal Standard de Liège
Bastien (47) Amallah (69)
2 2
  Arsenal
      
                  Lacazette (78)
                   Saka (80)
            
   crest
Arsenal
Lacazette (78)
Saka (80)

WHAT HAPPENED

We're through to the knockout stage of the Europa League, and we did it as group winners after a fine fightback in Belgium.

Standard Liege - who had to win by five to deny us qualification - gave it a good go. They were feisty and forceful and enjoyed strokes of fortune with both their goals.

Samuel Bastien tried his luck from 22 yards and his shot took a huge deflection off Sokratis. Emi Martinez, completely wrongfooted and committed to his dive, couldn't quite reach the ball as it floated into the net.

Selim Amallah doubled Standard's lead when Joe Willock gave the ball away inside the box, but again the goal relied on a sizeable deflection - this time off Dinos Mavropanos - to beat Martinez.

Things looked bleak, but Bukayo Saka stemmed the flow with two game-changing contributions.

First, his brilliant cross from the left was headed in at close range by Alex Lacazette.

That was followed by a dancing run from Saka, an exchange of passes with Gabriel Martinelli, and a curling finish into the bottom corner. A sensational goal from the teenager.

As news filtered through that Eintracht Frankfurt were losing at home to Vitoria, Standard chased the winner that would take them through at the Germans' expense.

That made for a grandstand finish, but we held on to deny Standard, save Frankfurt, and get what we wanted.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Get the full story of our final Group F game with our play-by-play updates

THREE THINGS WE NOTICED

https://www.arsenal.com/news/uel-three-things-we-noticed-1

WHAT IT MEANS


TEAM NEWS

Freddie Ljungberg made nine changes from the side that lined up at West Ham on Monday.

Sokratis and Ainsley Maitland-Niles kept their places but had to adjust to a change of formation as our head coach opted for a 3-4-3 shape.

Mavropanos was drafted into the defence, Lacazette wore the captain's armband and Reiss Nelson and Smith Rowe completed the front three.

The absentee list was a long one: Bellerin, Ceballos, Holding, Pepe, Tierney and Xhaka were all nursing injuries, while Mustafi was suspended.

WHAT’S NEXT

We're back in Premier League action on Sunday, and it's a huge test. Champions Manchester City visit the Emirates.

 

 

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