By 1970’s Gooner
It was an easier contest for Arsenal than originally anticipated.
Part of the reason was that Arsenal approached this game professionally and gave it the respect it deserved. There was commitment from all the players and a desire to excel in everything they tried to do.
The other reason is that Sparta did not play rough or try and intimidate the young Arsenal players. They probably learned their lesson from the first leg.
They also did not play that defensively as they needed to score if they were to have any chance of getting anything out of this game.
This approach resulted in more space being available for Arsenal to exploit which they duly did. Mostly from Walcott who has really improved this season.
His penetrative and lightning fast runs did give Arsenal real width last night.
He is beginning to remind me of Man Utd’s Ronaldo a few seasons ago when he did everything right but for the crosses. Once Theo corrects this he will turn out to be a better player.
Rosicky was not as penetrative but he did get the goal.
Arsenal’s six of the nine goals scored so far in all competitions have come from midfield players.
This is a real improvement and what everyone has been crying out for: goals from midfielders.
The pairing of two similar central midfielders, Gilberto and Diaby did not really work as neither of them is creative enough. When Fabregas came on Arsenal had more flair and technique.
Similarly RVP’s pairing with Eduardo did not work. RVP needs to play off a front man and so does Eduardo. The latter's first goal for Arsenal a typical fox in the box approach as he connected to Denilson's low cross from the right.
His cut back for the Fabregas goal however was first class. He does need more games to settle in however. More than we think.
Overall a good work out for the team as they prepare themselves for the more difficult task of beating Portsmouth at the same venue.
You can watch the goals and highlights on the video but I don’t know how long they will be available.