UEFA Champions League

March 4, 2008


AC Milan

0 - 2


UEFA Champions League

19:45 +00:00, March 4, 2008

Giuseppe Meazza

2nd Leg: 0 - 2 (Agg)

  • 95'

    What a game! Thanks for your company, and for bearing with us through a few technical hitches. Until next time.

  • 95'

    For some reason, our software chose not to publish my description of the second Arsenal goal, so here it: Theo Walcott streaks down the right, past Kaladze and squares across goal for Emmanuel Adebayor to tap home for his first goal in the Champions League.

  • 95'

    Well, what a game and what a monumentous evening for Arsenal. All their big players turned up and bossed proceedings and in doing so reduced AC Milan to a ramshackle outfit. Remarkable.

  • 94'

    Arsene Wenger is fit to burst. he thought the chance had gone - as did we - but two late goals have seen the Gunners through. The final whistle. It is confirmed!

  • 93'

    Arsenal have been imperious this evening. They have humiliated the reigning champions on their own patch, and should really be more than two nil up. Hats off to them, what a display.

  • 92'

    Theo Walcott streaks down the right, past Kaladze and squares across goal for Emmanuel Adebayor to tap home for his first goal in the Champions League.

  • 92'

    GOAL! Arsenal are through!

  • 91'

    'Are you watching Tottenham,' the Gooner fans now sing.

  • 90'

    Gilberto is on, not sure who for yet. Four minutes of injury time to play.

  • 89'

    Milan's fans are streaming for the exit and the San Siro reverberates to the noise of Arsenal's travelling fans.

  • 88'

    This could also be curtains for Ancelotti. Milan are out of contention in Serie A, out of the Italian Cup, and very nearly out of the Champions League.

  • 88'

    Its all about time wasting for Arsenal now. Even in their illustrious history, this would be a monumental night.

  • 87'

    A succession of corners for AC but Sagna clears well before Gallas hoofs clear. they're Gunner do it! Sorry, pitiful that was.

  • 86'

    Eleven English sides have come here to play AC Milan and NONE of them have won. Arsenal are on the brink.

  • 85'

    Now Pirlo is booked for akick at Walcott. The champions are falling apart and their season is over, unless they can score two goals in five minutes.

  • 84'

    I've been telling Fabregas to shoot for 80 minutes, he finally does it, the ball flicks off Nesta and creeps in the bottom corner. They have the goal they deserve. Finally!

  • 84'

    GOAL! Arsenal have scored!

  • 83'

    Pato shoots again but weakly, and straight at Almunia. He's due one soon that lad.

  • 82'

    It isn't, Sagna clears.

  • 82'

    The referee is trying to get back in Kaka's good books by awarding him a non-existent free kick. Let's hope this isn't the moment.

  • 81'

    Ten minutes left. And three minutes until Milan score, if my prediction is spot on.

  • 80'

    Kaka doesn't get a throw-in, slams the ball to the floor in a fit of petulance and rightly gets a big fat yellow card in his chops.

  • 79'

    Pato is getting closer! A long ball from Ambrosini sees him one on one with Clichy. He cuts inside and hits left footed and Senderos get a nick on it to send the ball just wide.

  • 78'

    Not quite from Diaby there as his floated cross is a few yards out of reach of Adebayor. The vistors have had 60% of the possession we are told by the statman.

  • 77'

    We're entering dangerous territory for Arsenal now. They haven't taken their chances, or capitalised on their dominance, which means Milan know one goal may well win it for them. Football can be cruel sometimes....

  • 76'

    A quarter of an hour remaining....

  • 75'

    So now we've got 18-year-old Theo Walcott up against 39-year-old Paolo Maldini. Raw pace against a seasoned veteran. Intruiging.

  • 74'

    More danger for Milan! Hleb dinks a ball for Walcott whose control takes him wide and allows Kalac to get something on his cross, which doesn't quite drop for Adebayor.

  • 73'

    From the corner the ball fell to Oddo whose fizzing half volley could have gone anywhere. It hit Flamini and Almunia pounces.

  • 72'

    Maldini has forced a coorner. He's now marking Walcott.

  • 71'

    Clichy has been booked for a challenge on Ambrosini, who does another dying swan routine.

  • 70'

    Good closing again from Flamini. What a player he has been this season. Here's the change, Eboue makes way for Walcott - the man who set up that glorious Adebayor chance in the first leg.

  • 69'

    Theo Walcott is preapring to come on for Arsenal too.

  • 68'

    Inzaghi is coming off, to be replaced by Gilardino.

  • 67'

    Now Eboue goes down in the box after Maldini had a little grab at him with his right arm. Not a penalty but not clever from Paolo.

  • 67'

    Another silky Arsenal move is only slightly let down by the final ball, which Hleb can't reach ahead of Kaladze.

  • 66'

    Now Pato has mistimed a run when Arsenal were stretched at the back. That was poor from the 18-year-old, he was looking across the line and should have held his run.

  • 65'

    Pato has a chance to make amends for his glaring miss in the first half as he shapes up to volley from 20 yards out but he can't get proper contact on it and the ball sails wide.

  • 64'

    Fabregas should be smashing that AGAIN! He aims instead for an ambitious ball inside Maldini which Eboue was never going to get. And doesn't.

  • 63'

    Oh yes, the football. Kaka comes inside and shoots. It goes wide. There, you're up to date.

  • 62'

    A quick 40 yard sprint from yours truly means the lights are back on. I think I've pulled a hamstring I was moving that fast.

  • 61'

    Apologies for any spelling mistakes in the last few minutes, the vagaries of ESPN HQ mean every now and again (usually at moments of high drama) the lights go out and we are plunged into virtual darkness. As just happened then.

  • 60'

    Milan look like they have been ordered to press Arsenal a bit higher up the field and deny them as much time on the ball this half. Its working - to an extent.

  • 59'

    The game has gone a bit scrappy of late, a few free kicks and stoppages have slowed things down.

  • 58'

    Arsene Wenger looks a tad concerned on the sidelines. He knows his side should be at least 2-0 up by now and the longer things go on, the more you fancy AC to sneak it.

  • 56'

    Eboue has now been booked after the legend that is Paolo Maldini feigns injury after being caught by a moderately high boot from the Arsenal defender. I expected beteer from the great man.

  • 55'

    From the resultant scramble Oddo crosses, Inzaghi claims a corner, then gets booked for arguing with the ref. Now now Pippo.

  • 54'

    Pirlo goes for goal from an impossible distance but the ball bounces in front of Almunia and he's forced to parry it behind for a corner.

  • 53'

    A shameful dive from Ambrosini cons the ref and he wins a free kick on the left 50 yards from goal.

  • 52'

    Arsenal are going to lose this game 1-0 after AC score in the 83rd minute. There, that is my prediction. If the Gunners don't score in the next ten minutes they never will - the champions are there for the taking.

  • 51'

    Another SUPERB chance for Arsenal! Pirlo shanks a clearance under pressure from Hleb, then Adebayor feeds Diaby with a clear sight of goal from ten yards but he slices his shot wide. HOW MANY MORE CHANCES DO YOU NEED ARSENAL?!

  • 50'

    AC Milan's creeking, not to mention ageing, back line just can't deal with the pace and sheer physical strength of Adebayor. He's a brute!

  • 49'

    Oh, what a chance for Senderos! The ball finds him at the back post and if he struck it a yard either side of Kalac it was in. But he hit the ball right into the keeper's arms. Great chance.

  • 48'

    Adebayor is at it straight away, using his power to win a corner.

  • 47'

    Milan will surely have returned with a flea in their ear from Carlo Ancelotti, who may have politely reminded them they are reigning European champions and asked them to act as such.

  • 46'

    I spent half time weeping at the memory of my visit to the San Siro, as a Newcastle fan when we were in the Champions League. It feels like a long, long time ago. Anyway, we're off again...

  • 45'

    A rousing end to the half as Fabregas releases Diaby, who should have shot (have I said that before?!) before Kaka streaks clear and looks for Inzaghi. Senderos comes across to intercept though. So, half time, 0-0, but Arsenal looking superb. Can they see it through in the second half. See you in 15...

  • 44'

    Just one minute left for Arsenal to chalk up a goal that they fully deserve in this first half.

  • 43'

    A sign of how poor AC Milan are, Kaladze punts one aimlessly downfield and straight into the arms of Almunia. Suddenly, the European champions are looking ragged.

  • 42'

    And when they don't have the ball Flamini is tearing into the likes of Pato and Kaka to win it back.

  • 41'

    Arsenal are revelling in this San Siro atmosphere and the Italian crowd are mortally offended that the Gunners are running the show. Don't count AC out just yet though. Oh no no no no.

  • 40'

    Ronaldo has scored for Man United, which should see them through against Lyon.

  • 39'

    Arsenal MUST make this spell of pressure count. They are completely dominant at the moment and are zipping the ball around majestically. They need to make the most of it AND SCORE.

  • 38'

    Adebayor wins a free kick on the left but again the delivery is poor.

  • 37'

    Again a bit too intricate from Arsenal - Hleb this time - who is looking for a far too delicate through ball on the edge of Milan's penalty area. Me bellowing 'Hit it!' repeatedly at the screen makes no difference I'm afraid.

  • 36'

    We may be 125 minutes into the tie and still awaiting the first goal, but this is fascinating stuff.

  • 35'

    Arsenal have totally bossed the last five minutes. Not many teams come to the San Siro and do that to AC Milan.

  • 34'

    OOH! Fabregas has hit the bar! Adebayor cuts inside, sidesteps Oddo and offloads to Fabregas whose swerving shot beats Kalac all ends up but cannons back off the bar.

  • 33'

    Its keep ball from Arsenal at the moment, they string 20 or so passes together before Hleb goes down theatrically after contact from Nesta. The ref books Hleb for diving, when a free kick for Arsenal looked like the right call.

  • 32'

    The San Siro howls and whistles as Arsenal's supporters make themselves heard for the first time.

  • 31'

    More strong work down the right from Eboue but his excellent ball across the face of goal isn't met by anyone in a white shirt.

  • 30'

    Not such a great delivery from Fabregas, who takes the corner and sees Kaladze clear comfortably.

  • 29'

    More pressure from Arsenal and nice interplay between Hleb and Fabregas. The Spaniard's shot is behind for a corner.

  • 28'

    Kaladze clears the corner and Milan won a free kick anyway. That was so nearly Emmanuel Adebayor's first goal in the competition this season. Yes, an utterly amazing statistic. Athankyou.

  • 27'

    Adebayor has a go! He cuts in and curls one toward the far corner which Kalac gets fingertips to. Great effort.

  • 26'

    Now Kaka tries to be a little too delicate when well placed. He should have funked it at goal from 18 yards out.

  • 25'

    The game has settled somewhat and the pattern is set. Milan dominating, Arsenal looking for swift and fluid counter attacking moves.

  • 24'

    By the way, dear Champions League follower, Sevilla are leading Fenerbahce 2-1 already!

  • 23'

    Milan are currently proving they can move the ball around with just as much class as Arsenal - without the same pace however.

  • 22'

    There's that man Inzhagi again, shooting left footed but narrowly wide. Keeps had it covered mind.

  • 21'

    Arsenal waste a free kick deep in Milan territory by straying offside from Flamini's delivery.

  • 20'

    Inzaghi met the corner but his header flashed wide. AC re-asserting themselves in the last five minutes here..

  • 19'

    Now Senderos makes an error but Clichy nips in ahead of Inzaghi to clear behind for a corner.

  • 18'

    Oh Pato! He's fluffed a great chance! Kaka stretched his legs for the first time and lofted a beautiful cross for Pato, ten yards out, but his volley was oh-so weak. A let off for the Gunners.

  • 17'

    Again Arsenal build down the right with Eboue and Sagna combining. Oddo hooks away the former's cross however.

  • 16'

    A very bright opening to the game so far with Arsenal giving as good as they get...

  • 15'

    That was a flashback to the Arsenal we all know and love, the team who tries to be too clever by half and walk the ball into the net. They had a spell of possession on the box edge and someone should have had a punt at goal.

  • 14'

    Now Pippo Inzaghi meets a Maldini cross on the volley forcing Almunia down to save well.

  • 13'

    First real chance for Arsenal as Adebayor holds up play brilliantly and comes inside before offloading to Diaby who tries to curl a sidefooted shot into the top corner and isn't far away.

  • 12'

    Gallas is alright and we resume...

  • 11'

    William Gallas climbs well to meet Kaka's corner and receives a bump on the head for his trouble.

  • 10'

    More pressure from Milan as they force a free kick, then a corner, as Flamini heads behind.

  • 9'

    From the corner Fabregas clears off the line after a ricochet helped it goal bound, then Diaby clears a wicked swinging Pirlo cross.

  • 8'

    Hleb lets fly from distance but the ball sails high and wide. Then Pato embarks on a mazy dribble ending in a shot which dips just over the bar courtesy of a clip off Clichy. Corner.

  • 7'

    Pato pulls back from the left and Gattuso strikes, but the ball is deflected off Senderos and trickles through to Almunia.

  • 6'

    Kaka's first run of the game is brought to an end by a sliding challenge from Fabregas. The young Spaniard may have plenty of similar work to get through this evening...

  • 5'

    Barcelona have already scored and Celtic's slim UCL hopes are over. Xavi with the killer blow in the Camp Nou.

  • 4'

    Arsenal are looking to press Milan high up the pitch by the looks, as Hleb and Fabregas squeeze up on the AC back four.

  • 3'

    Now Milan break and Inzaghi is flagged offside when his striking pal Pato was coming from deep (and onside) to try and collect. Interesting one...

  • 2'

    Arsenal are on the attack early and two of their heavyweight stars combine instantly, Fabregas looks for Adebayor but his ball is slightly overhit. Game on.

  • 1'

    The teams are out, we're all set, and the game is underway in a sparkling atmosphere..


    However, a 0-0 draw was not a disaster for the Gunners at all. It affords them a bit of leeway in as much as an AC Milan goal doesn't necessarily alter what they have to do; namely score a goal. If they do and game ends 1-1, Arsenal would go through on away goals.


    How the Gunners would have loved to be taking a one goal lead to the San Siro, and they would have done if only Emmanuel Adebayor had nodded home the simplest of chances in the final seconds of the first leg.


    Well here it is football lovers, European nights don't come much bigger than this. Italian giants AC Milan host Premier League leaders Arsenal in one of the world's greatest stadiums with a place in the quarter finals of the Champions League at stake. Strap yourself in for a rollercoaster night of stupendous footballing action..


    And the European Champions: Kalac, Maldini, Kaladze, Nesta, Oddo, Ambrosini, Pirlo, Gattuso, Alexandre Pato, Kaka and Inzaghi.


    Arsenal: Almunia, Clichy, Senderos, Gallas, Sagna, Diaby, Fabregas, Flamini, Eboue, Hleb and Adebayor. Or to give him his full title, 'How did he miss Adebayor'?


    It's 0-0 after the first leg in London so the game is evenly poised. Can the Gunners knockout the European Champions? Join us at 19.45 UK time to find out?


    AC Milan have never lost at home to an English side in Europe. Which is not ideal for Arsenal who'll need to do just that tonight if they are to progress in the Champions League!