Gunners trail Bayern after first-leg defeat

Jonas Eidevall’s Arsenal travelled to Bayern Munich’s Allianz Arena on Tuesday night, where they’d play out the first-leg of their Champions League Quarterfinal in front of 20,000 fans. Bayern hadn’t conceded in their previous four games – and haven’t lost at home in almost a year – while Arsenal have recently enjoyed a Continental Tyres League Cup win, so a winner was incredibly difficult to call ahead of kickoff.

BAY: Grohs; Hansen, Kumagai, Viggósdóttir, Rall; Stanway, Zadrazil; Bühl, Magull, Lohmann; Schüller

ARS: Zinsberger; Maritz, Rafaelle, Williamson, Wienroither; Wälti, Little, McCabe; Foord, Blackstenius, Maanum

Bayern started strongly, with Lea Schüller played through on goal almost immediately after kickoff – but the striker’s effort was cleared by Arsenal after she failed to make any meaningful contact with the ball. Klara Bühl’s free-kick soon after could have caused a problem for Manuela Zinsberger in between the sticks, though thankfully the whipped ball in sailed over every Bayern shirt before going out for a goal kick.

Eidevall’s side felt they should have won a penalty with less than ten minutes played, after the ball struck Viggósdóttir inside the box – but the Icelandic defender’s arm was held tight against her body, so no penalty was given.

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Caitlin Foord was Arsenal’s main creative outlet, and her balls in from the left flank posed a significant threat to the Bayern defence – Stina Blackstenius couldn’t keep her header down though, and it sailed over the crossbar without threatening Maria Grohs’ clean sheet.

Lea Schüller came close to opening the scoring as she was played in, beating Leah Williamson to the ball before unleashing a low strike from distance – her effort trickled out just wide of the post though prompting a huge sigh of relief for the Gunners. Schüller forced a save from Zinsberger soon after, but the striker still couldn’t find a way past the Arsenal ‘keeper.

Schüller eventually took the lead after orchestrating a fabulous bit of buildup play from Bayern, playing the ball out wide to Maximiliane Rall before surging into the box. Rall’s cross into the box was sublime, and Schüller rose highest inside the area, powering a header past Zinsberger to give the hosts the lead at half-time. She could have bagged a second, after working her way between Leah Williamson and Noelle Maritz – but her first-time strike was sent inches wide of the post.

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Arsenal could have equalised after the break, as Caitlin Foord – who had been so threatening in the first half – cut inside on her right foot, curling an effort towards the far post though it crashed off the post! Another chance for the winger followed soon after, but Maria-Luisa Grohs was able to dive and make the save – albeit not convincingly.

Jonas Eidevall’s side were awarded a free-kick with just over an hour played as Caitlin Foord was hauled to the ground by Maximiliane Rall – and Frida Maanum’s ball into the box caused problems for the hosts, as Rafaelle Souza’s strike was cleared off the line. The ball eventually fell to Stina Blackstenius, who managed to divert a header towards goal – and while she’d beaten Grohs, Saki Kumagai did exceptionally well to clear it off the line to preserve Bayern’s 1-0 lead.

Eidevall felt there should have been a penalty for the Gunners during that kerfuffle, as Rafaelle Souza’s shirt was pulled – but Ivana Projkovska didn’t award the visitors a chance from the spot.

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Arsenal should have equalised once again in the 74th minute – Bayern had failed to properly clear an Arsenal corner, and Leah Williamson managed to get a shot on goal, but it was cleared off the line by Schüller! The Gunners’ should have been awarded an indirect free-kick as Maria-Luisa Grohs picked up a backless, but once again the Macedonian referee failed to penalise the hosts.

Klara Bühl could have doubled Bayern’s lead in injury time, after working her way past Katie McCabe – though the winger’s effort sailed just over the crossbar, meaning Arsenal return to the Emirates with a one-goal deficit ahead of next Wednesday’s second-leg in North London.

Attendance: 20,000


  1. […] on Bayern Munich in the second-leg of their UWCL quarter-final looking to overturn a 1-0 deficit. Lea Schüller’s 39th minute header was enough to give Bayern the win last week in the Allianz Arena, but they will know that they will […]

  2. […] Spurs recently sacked Rehanne Skinner after they picked up nine consecutive league defeats – though the Lilywhites picked up a 1-0 win over struggling Leicester City last time out. Arsenal would pose an entirely different threat, but would Jonas Eidevall’s side be distracted by their UWCL tie against Bayern Munich? […]

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