Post-Match Report

Youth League: Bayern Munich 1-1 Arsenal

Ismael Bennacer

Bayern Munich -

Grunwalder Stadium
UEFA Youth League
UEFA Youth League
  Bayern Munich
              Fabian Benko (11)
Bayern Munich
Fabian Benko (11)
1 1
  Arsenal U19
                  Ismael Bennacer (39)
Arsenal U19
Ismael Bennacer (39)
(This fixture kicks-off at 2pm local time)

By Max Jones at Grunwalder Stadium


Arsenal Under-19s maintained their unbeaten Uefa Youth League record with a 1-1 draw against Bayern Munich on Wednesday afternoon.

Fabian Benko put the hosts ahead after 11 minutes, racing on to a loose ball before smashing in off the inside of the post, before Ismael Bennacer scored his first goal for the club in spectacular fashion to equalise.

The Gunners could have taken the lead when Reiss Nelson was brought down inside the box on the stroke of half-time, but Ben Sheaf fired over from the penalty spot.

Substitute Marco Friedl had one final chance to win the game for Bayern right at the death but Hugo Keto produced a fine diving save to preserve Arsenal's unbeaten run in Europe.


Andries Jonker made five changes to the side that beat Bayern 2-0 at Meadow Park in the young Gunners’ last Youth League outing.

Alex Iwobi’s first-team call-up for the evening’s Champions League game saw Daniel Crowley, who had recently returned from a loan spell at League One side Barnsley, reinstated on the right-hand side.

Tafari Moore and Krystian Bielik’s absences saw the Gunners’ reshuffle their backline, with Jordi Osei-Tutu making his debut in the competition and Stefan O’Connor coming in to partner Julio Pleguezuelo at centre back.

Elsewhere, Chris Willock’s inclusion at the expense of Savvas Mourgos saw Nelson deployed at No 10, while Kaylen Hinds led the line. Donyell Malen dropped to the bench.


Arsenal started the game brightly, with Willock looking dangerous on the left but, despite their early probing, it was Bayern who drew first blood when Benko pounced on a loose ball and fired a low strike in off the post from 18 yards.

The striker had a chance to double his tally moments later when he found himself through on goal with only Keto to beat, but the goalkeeper produced a diving save to deny him.

Keto then thwarted Michael Strein and Dominik Martinovic before Arsenal went down the other end and equalised in spectacular fashion. Bayern could only clear Crowley’s pass as far as Bennacer, who beat his man with quick feet and hammered a powerful drive into the top corner.

The hosts had struggled to contain Arsenal’s tricky forwards and Sheaf had a great chance to put the Gunners ahead after Nelson had been tripped in the box, but the midfielder couldn’t capitalise, blazing well over from the penalty spot.


Marcus Agyei-Tabi and Malen replaced Sheaf and Crowley at the break and it wasn’t long before the substitutes linked up. Agyei-Tabi picked out Malen on the edge of the box and the forward sent a dipping half-volley inches wide of the bottom corner.

Bennacer was also growing increasingly influential and almost added an assist to a fine individual display when he whipped in a teasing free-kick from the right-hand side. David Hundertmark couldn’t hold on to it under pressure from O’Connor, but Alexander Gschwend recovered to clear from under his own crossbar.

Bayern were next to go close when Marco Stefandl found himself unmarked on the edge of Arsenal’s area, but Agyei-Tabi was well positioned to make a vital block as the midfielder’s low strike flew towards goal.

Both sides continued to press for the winner and Bayern could have stolen all three points in the final stages, were it not for Keto’s superb reflexes.

Friedl found himself open 18 yards out and his half-volley looked certain to fly into the top corner, but Keto dived across goal to tip wide and secure a valuable point for Arsenal.

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