UEFA Champions League

April 15, 2009



3 - 0


UEFA Champions League

18:45 +00:00, April 15, 2009

Emirates Stadium, England

Referee: Wolfgang Stark

2nd Leg: 4 - 1 (Agg)

  • 93'

    Arsenal are deserving winners - a 4-1 aggregate win over a decent Villarreal side. The Gunners will face Man Utd who beat Porto in tonight's other quarter-final.

  • 93'

    And that's the final whistle!

  • 93'

    The fans (those left) sing their approval as the finals seconds ebb away

  • 92'

    Capdevila is off the pitch injured - should be OK, but he looks uncomfortable

  • 91'

    Arsenal are through - they look like the will face Man Utd who still lead Porto 1-nil against Porto with added time being played.

  • 90'

    Three added minutes to play

  • 89'

    Pires is the exception - still pulling the strings looking to thread balls through non-existent gaps.

  • 88'

    The intesity in the game has gone - both sides know it is over

  • 87'

    Nihat is wide of the mark with a freekick

  • 87'

    Gibbs goes over awkwardly on his ankle - should be OK, but will twinge in the morning. Ice required one suspects as the youngster gets to his feet gingerly.

  • 86'

    Diaby drills a low, rasping shot wide of the far post after getting the better of Godin - who has been turned inside out tonight by Van Persie, Walcott, Adebayor and now Diaby - he'll be glad when the whistle goes

  • 85'

    To qualify a previous comment - it's only a handful of fans who are leaving, but still it's a bit poor isn't it? You hope fellow fans are muttering their disapproval loudly as the fair-weather fans sneak out.

  • 84'

    Fabregas is still full of running - what player, and what fame he's had.

  • 83'

    A few Arsenal fans are actually sneaking out... that's a bit lame isn't it? How about waiting for the final whistle to cheer the team that have taken you into the Champions League semi-final??!

  • 81'

    The final substitution of the night sees Adebayor milk the applause as he leaves the pitch. On in his place is young Danish striker Bendtner

  • 80'

    Special mention also for Gibbs who has slotted in and looked excellent - composed and at ease throughout the game.

  • 79'

    Arsenal mopped up everything that has been thrown at them with Fabregas and Song superb in breaking down Villarreal

  • 78'

    The Yellow Submarine are sadly sunk - they looked threatening late in the first half and early in the second but just could not convert their pressure

  • 77'

    Villarreal look dejected - any fight looks to have left them

  • 76'

    Denilson and Eboue pass the ball between themselves four or five times - the game now has the air of a training exercise for Arsenal who seek to keep the ball with one touch passing

  • 75'

    A shot into the side netting is Walcott's last touch he is subbed and so is another scorer, Van Persie. Replacing them are Diaby and Denilson

  • 74'

    !5 mins to go - Arsenal coasting

  • 73'

    Arsenal on the back foot as Villarreal seek to get something out the game, even is its just a face-saving consolation goal. Pires and Nihat sharing some sweet one-two, pass and move play

  • 72'

    Nihat is a lively player and is seeing plenty of the ball now Arsenal have dialled down the intensity a notch

  • 71'

    Angel finds Ibagaza who sticks a pass into Rossi - but Fabianski is again off his line and smothers the danger. The Arseanal keeper has had a great night

  • 70'

    A final change for Villarreal Cani, who has looked dangerous at times, is off, in his stead is Ripolles

  • 69'

    More line-dancing from the Arsenal players - they are loving this!

  • 69'

    Van Persie converts the penalty and Arsenal are 3-0 up!

  • 68'

    Eguren gets a second yellow for having his say in the ref's ear. He trduges off at a snail's pace

  • 67'

    The Villarreal players are livid - the ref consults his linesman.

  • 66'

    Godin catches Walcott and takes him down - it's a tough break for Villarreal, the defender looked like he got the ball, but he took the man as well.

  • 66'

    Penalty to Arsenal!

  • 65'

    Arsenal really do look good - some neat pass and move

  • 64'

    It will be of extreme frustration to Villarreal that they conceded just as they were looking their most potent - but they must rally now: They need two goals... but Arsenal are pinging the ball about at will

  • 63'

    The two changes for Villarreal: Bruno - who has been annonymous all game - and Fernandez are off, on are Nihat and Ibagaza

  • 62'

    Two changes coming for Villarreal - they need to get goals, but if they go all out Arsenal will be able to exploit gaps at the back, but they have no option: It's no guts, no glory time

  • 61'

    Villarreal are stunned - but must pull themselves together - they must go for it now.

  • 60'

    Excellent four-man celeb - like line dancing, but better and with no hats. Wenger got a bit excited on the sideline as well, he knows that goal was crucial

  • 59'

    Van Persie pulled the strings for the goal drawing two men to him before threading a pass left into the path of Adebayor. His first touch got him past his marker and prodded finish beats Lopez. Great move, great finish

  • 58'

    Goal for Arsenal!!

  • 57'

    Fury from the Arsenal fans as an offside call against Adebayor denies a scoring opportunity. Eboue had gathered the ball after the ref gave Arsenal the advantage after Van Persie was fouled

  • 57'

    Gibbs has the beating of Fernadez; he robs the winge and feeds a neat ball to Van Persie

  • 56'

    There are nerves amongst the Arsenal fans - they know the advantage they have is narrow and Villarreal are looking as dangerous as they have all night.

  • 55'

    Villarreal aren't creating clear chances the possession is threat - Arsenal need Fabregas and Song to reclaim the dominance in the middle of the pitch

  • 54'

    Again Fabianksi is out of his box to clear after a quick ball catches Arsenal

  • 53'

    Credit to Villarreal they are having a bit more of the ball this half - they are in this game, of that there is no doubt.

  • 52'

    Great stuff from Arsenal - Van Persie catching Godin in possession giving Adebayor a half chance. Nothing came of it, but the pressure from Arsenal will put nerves through Villarreal whenever they are on the ball

  • 51'

    Fabianski off his line and wide on the wing way out of his area to snuff out a loose ball Lopez wanted to latch onto - quick thinking from the keeper

  • 50'

    Rossi smacked the freekick into the Arsenal wall from 40-yards. Gonzalo tried his luck from the rebound, but his effort is over the bar

  • 50'

    A booking for Cani for talking back to the ref. Cani wanted Silvestre booked for a foul which has given Villarreal a chance of shot on goal

  • 49'

    Eboue hopelessly shanks a cross a light year high and wide of the back stick. Woeful.

  • 48'

    Gibbs is having a good night - calm under pressure, impressive for a young player on a big night

  • 47'

    Weirdo moment of the night: Toure was blatantly offside, and knew it so stopped in his tracks and let the attack break down from the corner, bit the linesman didn't flag...

  • 46'

    Arsenal start the second half as they did the first - applying pressure. Corner to the home side.

  • 46'

    We are back under way...

  • 46'

    Advantage Arsenal: 1-0 on the night thanks to Walcott and 2-1 in the tie. The job is not done yet, but Arsenal can be happy with with way things are going. The second half is coming your way, keep it here...

  • 46'

    And that's the first half over.

  • 45'

    Godin heads over the bar from the corner - should have done better.

  • 45'

    The ref steps in to stop some pushing and shoving

  • 44'

    Late pressure for Arsenal as Villarreal win a corner

  • 44'

    A minute of stoppage time signal - good opening half

  • 43'

    Booking for Eguren who clatters into Fabregas - now he can be booed for good reason!

  • 42'

    Pires gets a bit of time and space - he needs to a ahndle on this game

  • 41'

    While the tie is this finely balanced Villarreal remain a threat

  • 40'

    So far, so good for Arsenal. Wenger will want another goal to ensure his side's clear dominance is converted

  • 39'

    A slow phase of play in what has been a frentic first half

  • 38'

    Rossi gets the ball, holds it up waits for support then feeds it wide - nice from Villarreal

  • 37'

    Song concedes a foul for paying close attention to Pires - Song is on song tonight... worst pun ever, honestly not intentional, but weak all the same. Sorry.

  • 36'

    Villarreal restricted to hopeful balls from deep as they are unable to play through the heart of this Arsenal side

  • 35'

    And Eboue and Walcott copy their colleagues on the opposite flank playing a neat one-two which Walcott crossed in for Adebayor. The striker made a bit of a mess of the chance, but he is proving a real handful for Gonzalo and Godin at the back

  • 35'

    Gibbs and Nasri linking up well on the left

  • 34'

    Lopez picks out Ferandez with a great through ball but three Arsenal defenders close off his options and Fabianksi is out to smother the ball. Neatly done.

  • 33'

    Eguren booed as he comes back on. Bit harsh that, given that he got hit in the face. Still, no harm done and the game continues

  • 32'

    Eguren is doused in water as he gathers himself after taking a whack in the mush from Van Persie - no malice in the trailing arm, but probably painful all the same

  • 32'

    Adebayor leaves Gonzalo for dead - the speed differential is crazy!

  • 31'

    Fernadez takes the freekick. It was on target but too tame to trouble Fabianski who watched the ball into his arms

  • 30'

    Silvestre gives away a freekick for a foul on Fernandez in a dangerous position 30-yards out

  • 29'

    Walcott muscled off the ball - by three men!

  • 28'

    Lopez parried the freekick but only as far as Adebayor who headed on goal. Almost every member of the nine (yes, nine) man wall headed back and somehow scrambled the ball clear.

  • 27'

    Ball cleared off the line!

  • 27'

    Freekick to Arsenal on the edge of the box in a central position. Van Persie looks interested!

  • 26'

    Fernandez wrestles Fabregas to the floor and looks confused as to why the ref blows for a foul!

  • 25'

    Song is back, but looks a little uncomfortable

  • 24'

    Plays goes on with Arsenal down to ten men - Wenger looks a bit worried

  • 23'

    Song limps off the pitch for a bit of magic sponge action from the physio

  • 22'

    No sooner said than sone - Villarreal break out of their own half and storm the left flank

  • 21'

    With Bacary Sagna ruled out with a virus and William Gallas, Johan Djourou and Gael Clichy already sidelined Villarreal really need to be applying pressure - particularly on youngster Kieran Gibbs

  • 20'

    Flag up for offside as Arsenal apply pressure to Lopez goal - Adebayor falls foul of the flag

  • 19'

    Angel Lopez, Pires and Cani link up well and apply pressure to Arsenal

  • 19'

    Angel Lopez, Pires and Cani link up well and apply pressure to Arsenal

  • 16'

    Injury or not Walcott is giveing Villarreal (and Spain) left-back Capdevila a torrid time - he has his marker in his pocket

  • 15'

    Pires turning back the clock; some great pass and move from the Frenchman

  • 14'

    Worries for Arsenal as Walcott appears to be nursing a back injury - can he run it off?

  • 13'

    Villarreal are missing Marcos Senna who lashed home that stunner in the first leg and who is cornerstone of their midfield. The injury to hiim has left the visitors without strenght in the middle and at the moment are unable to get a handle on the game.

  • 12'

    Walcott making his presence felt with some superb running and positioning - he's always available for the ball

  • 11'

    Arsenal have the lead, but Villarreal have shown they are capable of creating problems. The game is far from over

  • 10'

    Walcott latches onto a neat through ball from Fabregas and the young winger finshes cooly by clipping the ball over the keeper

  • 9'

    Goal for Arsenal!!

  • 8'

    Great stuff - end to end

  • 7'

    Rossi clips a freekick deep towards an unmarked Diego Godin who half-volleys an effort straight at Fabianski's goal, low and to the keeper's left - a warning to Arsenal that the Spanish side will use invention at set-pieces

  • 6'

    Villarreal need a goal here at the Emirates after the first leg finished 1-1 at El Madrigal last week. Can ex-Manchester United striker Giuseppe Rossi get a goal?

  • 5'

    In Portugal Cristiano Ronaldo has scored a wonderful goal to give Manchester United the lead and a crucial away goal.

  • 4'

    Walcott causing chaos down the flanks; his ball into the box is ignored by the defence and via Fabregas Van Persie heads over - great start for Arsenal

  • 4'

    Van Persie hammers a shot on goal Diego Lopez's goal: It's straight at him, but a warning that the Gunners will shoot on sight

  • 3'

    The ball breaks clear from the corner and Villarreal escape, but Toure slides a pass to Walcott; pressure building

  • 3'

    Fabregas pulling the strings on the edge of the box slips a ball toward Adebayor; it's too strong but Arsenal force a corner

  • 2'

    Villarreal include former Gunners winger Robert Pires who makes his presence felt in the Arsenal half as the visitors press - goal kick for the Gunners

  • 1'

    Arsenal have never lost a game in the Champions League at the Emirates and if that remains the case in two hour's time they'll be in the semi-finals


    Tonight's referee Wolfgang Stark from Germany blows his whistle and we are under way...


    And for Villarreal: Diego Lopez, Angel, Rodriguez, Godin, Capdevila, Cani, Eguren, Bruno, Fernandez, Pires, Rossi. On the bench: Viera, Ibagaza, Nihat, Llorente, Javi Venta, Fuentes, Pablo.


    The team news is in, here's how the line up. Arsenal first: Fabianski, Eboue, Toure, Silvestre, Gibbs, Walcott, ong Billong, Fabregas, Nasri, Adebayor, Van Persie. The Subs: Mannone, Diaby, Eduardo, Vela, Denilson, Ramsey, Bendtner.