By Farid Khan
Results are not always a fair reflection of matches. Henderson and Lallana-less Liverpool were denied a well-deserved win against Arsenal at the Emirates, thanks to some poor refereeing, unfortunate fate and a lucky day at the office for Petr Cech. From the very first minute of the match, Liverpool were dominant against Arsenal, with Philipe Coutinho striking the cross bar very early in the match, to which Petr Cech had no answer and was as helpless as pedestrians in San Andreas.
Arsenal had their first chance of the night, when Santi Cazorla’s fluke ball found Aaron Ramsey, who closed his eyes and just kicked the ball, which found the back of the net, but his shirt was offside and the linesman spotted it correctly.
The Arsenal defense was in tatters, with Calum Chambers playing like a kid in the background, with no clue of basic defending. I’m sure had I asked him to shoot me, he would have misplaced the target by a proverbial mile. A Sunday League centre-back would have looked like John Terry in front of him. In the 39th minute, Christian Benteke created space and tapped in Roberto Firmino’s cross, but to Arsenal’s good fortune it was straight towards Petr Cech, who made it look like a great save.
Moments later, Philipe Coutinho dribbled past Arsenal defenders as if they were never there, sent Hector Bellerin back to Spain for a hot dog and curled a shot towards the net, which again struck the post. The first half ended with Liverpool on top, and Arsenal looking more like Portsmouth.
Arsenal started the second half in the same fashion as the first, with no sense of football and Arsene Wenger’s tricks were falling like pack of cards. An odd chance was created by their ever-so-dependent striker Olivier Giroud, to which Simon Mignolet made a Manuel Neuer-esque save.
Other than that, there was no-coordination or chances created at all. Brendan Rodgers tried to balance the game by substituting in 19-year old Jordon Ibe and 18-yeard old Jordan Rossiter, but the Arsenal side made them look like Gareth Bale & Eden Hazard instead. Joe Gomez, who showed signs of Roberto Carlos tonight, kept Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil in his back pocket and was questioned for their kidnapping after the match.
The match ended in a 0-0 draw, when Liverpool could have easily scored three, had the referring been spot on and a clear penalty shout hadn’t been refused. Arsenal had a lot of positives to take from the match as they played their best home game of the season, for a change didn’t concede at home and neither did they lose the match.
On the other hand, Brendan Rodgers seemed highly disappointed after the game, dropping two points against a team like Arsenal, which still remains winless at home this season. After three game-weeks, Liverpool are still undefeated and yet to concede a goal this season, so Arsenal can take heart out of it for they drew against a team with five more Champions League titles than they could ever manage to win.