Football News

Petr Cech reacts after Arsenal’s draw against Sporting Lisbon

Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech believes the team were not clinical enough to find the scoresheet during Thursday’s goalless draw against Sporting Lisbon in the Europa League. The Gunners required a victory to cement the top spot and reach the knockout stages of the competition but they could only manage the latter after settling for a 0-0 stalemate.

Speaking after the game, Cech said that Sporting were defensively organised throughout the game and this restricted the Gunners from finding the much-needed breakthrough, he said: “They defended really well and we created half chances. We had a lot of possession. We did well to control the game and play well at the back and they didn’t have a lot of chances.

“It took us a while to open them up and this is the kind of game where you need to score. It’s disappointing not to score as we wanted to guarantee top spot. At half-time we knew we were doing good, we just need to push for the goal and maintain intensity. We had some good chances in the second half and close calls but unfortunately we couldn’t put it in the back of the net. We take the points and qualification for the next round.”

With the goalless stalemate, the Gunners are assured of progress into the round of 32 of the competition but they require at least one more point from the remaining two matches to cement the top position in the group. Meanwhile, Unai Emery’s men have now experienced two winless matches on the bounce but they have the opportunity to make amends during the weekend.

Arsenal are scheduled to face Wolverhampton Wanderers at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday and the game offers them a chance to keep up in the Champions League race. After back-to-back Premier League stalemates, the Gunners have dropped one point behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur but they cannot afford to drop further with key games against Spurs and Manchester United to come after the international break.