Arsene Wenger’s team was held to a standstill today on Emirates by a very well organized French side Marseille. The Frenchmen knew that a loss on Emirates would complicate their chances to qualify to the knockout stages of the Champions League and they didn’t let that happen.
Arsenal started the game with three important changes compared to the Chelsea game. Vermaelen came on the pitch replacing Koscielny, young defender Carl Jenkinson replaced Djouroun on the right side of the defence and much to everyone’s shock team captain and current English Premier League top goal scorer Robin Van Persie was replaced by newly transferred C.Y. Park.
Wenger’s players had a good game with several scoring chances but nothing seemed just good enough to break the tension in the match. Ramsey took away the most important chance of the first half and in the second half Robin Van Persie was brought on the field replacing Park and the Dutch made his presence noticed with several very big opportunities.
The biggest change Arsenal had was taken away by Robin in the final minutes of the game when he tried to chip goalkeeper Mandanda, but the chip didn’t have enough height to go over the Frenchman.
Arsenal are still group leaders after this 4th group stage matchday and they are still only one point ahead of Marseille. The next matchday will bring Arsenal in front of Borussia Dortmund for the second time, this time on their own turf. A win against the Germans could secure the first place qualification for Arsenal, but a lose might tear a big whole in Wenger’s predictions.