Despite the setbacks, Arsenal kept the goal to nil, although it was not able to punish Liverpool on the counterattack without claw, without Sadio Mané and without Mohamed Salah, in the African Cup of Nations. Thiago Alcántara did not play either. With an eleven full of regulars, but without depth or verticality. It cost Liverpool in the first leg that should have been the second leg. A series of positives for COVID-19 in Jürgen Klopp’s team forced the postponement of the match in north London, which will now be the stage in which the tie is decided next week. Mikel Arteta’s problems accumulated. From the beginning. Theirs suffered a good local start, and then they began to lose troops. Cédric Soares was substituted due to knee problems after eleven minutes. twelve later, Granit Xhaka saw the red after wanting to intercept a long shipment for Diogo Jota. He contacted the Portuguese chest with his foot, who was left alone in front of Aaron Ramsdale. He was the last man. As a result of the expulsion, Eddie Nketiah, who had just scored a hat-trick in the previous round, had to leave so that Rob Holding could enter. Despite setbacks, Arsenal held on. He contained his rival and even threatened to punish him on the counter.
The same dynamic followed in the second half, to the frustration of the locals. Bukayo Saka had the opportunity to give advantage the Londoners with twenty minutes to go. He controlled a fantastic cross from Kieran Tierney from the left, but Alison Becker snatched the ball from him before he could finish. The Englishman was substituted in the final stretch due to physical problems. Or work. The one about Arsenal’s main threat. Klopp took the opportunity to make a triple offensive change. Without effect. Takumi Minamino was able to save the ballot in 90, but shot high despite the fact that Ramsdale was not under the sticks.