Arsenal’s Europa League campaign was the one constant that fans could seemingly rely on this season, but earlier this week, even that was taken away from them just a touch as they were unable to secure all three points against Vitoria SC. The first game against the Portuguese side just a few short weeks ago served as a warning sign that this game wasn’t going to be a walk in the park. On that occasion they had Nicolas Pepe to bail them out, but it soon became clear lightning wasn’t going to strike twice.
They had hoped it actually did in the 80th minute when a Pepe cross was nodded in by Shkodran Mustafi, but Bruno Duarte was on hand to ensure that lead didn’t last as Vitoria grabbed a late – and probably well deserved – equaliser.
You could argue that’s not much to go on for a 90 minute game of football, but in reality, there just wasn’t all too much to talk about here. It was a dull game in which the Gunners were fortunate to come away with the point, and that’s worrying, considering how many first team players were actually out on the pitch.
The questions will be asked of this team once again and of the manager, but there’s quite literally no time to waste. Arsenal have to re-focus their attention on the huge task that faces them this weekend as they take on a Leicester City side that appears to be in a great position.
Brendan Rodgers has been able to well and truly get the best out of his squad, and the Foxes look even more likely of securing a place in the top four than Arsenal do right now. Whether or not that actually comes to fruition, of course, remains to be seen.
What did you think of Arsenal’s performance?