Alex Iwobi Fails To Inspire Arsenal In Loss To Cologne
Published: November 23, 2017
Alex Iwobi Fails To Inspire Arsenal In Loss To CologneArsenal were stunned by Bundesliga opponents, Cologne in the UEFA Europa League as a Sehrou Guirassy penalty gave the German outfit a less likely 1-0 win on Thursday evening.

It was just the second time the Premier League club would fail to win in the second tier competition this season, after posting a goalless draw with Red Star Belgrade last time out.

Francis Coquelin rattled the woodwork with a ferocious drive in the 31st minute, the closest the Gunners came to finding a breakthrough in the less-frenzied first half.

After the break, Arsene Wenger's men controlled much more possession, amidst a couple of half chances but were eventually undone by a Seydou Guirassy penalty, Mathieu Debuchy clattering into the Cologne attacker to concede a spotkick which the Frenchman duly stroked home to give the hosts the lead on the 62nd minute.

Iwobi, who came on for Danny Welbeck in the second period, threatened an equalizer for Arsenal moments later, outwitting two to three defenders before ceding possession in the box.

In the 77th minute, Oliver Giroud clattered into Cologne goalkeeper, getting onto the end of a Jack Wilshere's lofted pass but came up short in the box as the German shot stopper foiled him, with Arsenal desperately pushing for a goal.

Reiss Nelson nearly grabbed a late equaliser for Arsenal, sending a weak shot after running through in the 88th minute as the Billy goats just about held on for a famous victory which keeps them within qualification to the next round.

The Gunners who are perched at the summit of their group with ten points are certain to finish as group winners though, but they would quickly want to forget the outcome of their lackadaisical display this evening.

Emmanuel Chinaza

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