Theo Walcott says he handed Olivier Giroud the penalty against BATE Borisov so he could score his 100th goal for Arsenal.
That’s the view of Gunners legend Keown, who suggests it could be the final nail in the coffin of Ozil’s Arsenal career if he doesn’t feature against Brighton this weekend.
BATE got their second goal in the 67th minute after comical defending from Arsenal who failed to clear their lines.
The Gunners’ penchant for lapses in concentration struck again however and after a ball from Aleksei Rios was whipped in Mirko Ivanic was on hand to thump his header past David Ospina at the near post. As with the first goal, Arsenal allowed men to go unmarked in the box. Thursday nights are now crossed-fingers nights for Wenger, Arsenal fans, Gareth Southgate and anybody who loves to see wonderful footballers achieve their potential.
Wenger travelled to Belarus with a young squad and gave a first senior start to Joe Willock and also named Ainsley Maitland-Niles and forward Reiss Nelson in his XI.
He said: “Jack showed tonight that he is on his way back to his best and I just pray that he is not hampered by any more problems”.
The European tournament is the only competition the midfielder has featured so far this campaign.
While Liverpool look to have a manager in place for the long term and have a few issues to iron out, Arsenal look to be winding down the clock on Wenger’s reign and while as a business the club are stable. “But now it’s up to them to resist those pressure situations”.
But it wasn’t all doom-and-gloom for BATE. Denis Scherbitskiy was in goals for the home side and made a colossal error. He got two goals and could have even more.
Stasevich’s delivery into the Arsenal box in the 31st minute nearly found its way into the bottom left-hand corner after taking the slightest of touches. Arsenal 3-0 up after 26 minutes but that wouldn’t last. It was a awful error from the BATE keeper and it was punished accordingly.
Atalanta leads Group E with four points following a 1-1 draw at Lyon, and Everton remains on the bottom with one point. The chances continued to come their way, with the likes of Stasevich and Volodko both squandering opportunities in front of goal.
There were 22 minutes remaining and, for Arsenal, they were often fractious, messy moments when the game suddenly looked more uncomfortable than it should have been.