Wednesday 19 October 2016
Arsenal 6 Ludogorets 0
Arsenal demolished the Bulgarian champions tonight in a relentless display of football, running out 6-0 victors in this Champions League tie.
The Gunners opened the scoring with a delightful Alexis Sanchez chip, a Bergkamp-esque lob over the Ludogorets keeper to make it 1-0 to the hosts. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, getting the start on the wing ahead of youngster Alex Iwobi, played Sanchez onside and the Chilean feinted his defender before lofting the ball over goalkeeper Vladislav Stoyanov to give Arsenal an early lead. A beautiful finish and one of the Sanchez's finest in an Arsenal shirt.
But the Bulgarians didn't give up and tested David Ospina a couple of times. The visitors gave the Arsenal defence something to think about and made sure the Gunners took them seriously.
However, in the 42nd minute Theo Walcott took aim from outside the box, and curled an unstoppable effort past the Ludogorets keeper to extend the lead. The Englishman is in a rich vein of form and can't put a foot wrong at the moment. At half time with the score 2-0, the game looked to be past the Bulgarians but the Gunners weren't finished just yet.
With less than a minute gone in the second half, Arsenal poured forwards and the ball fell to Oxlade-Chamberlain, who side-footed the ball perfectly into the corner to make it 3-0. The game was over at this stage but a certain German playmaker wanted more.
Mesut Ozil took the second half by the scruff of the neck and made the game all about him, netting a sumptuous hat trick. It was the first hat trick of the midfielder's career and he took each goal with confidence, especially his third, a volley in the 87th minute. Ozil deservedly took home the match ball after one of his finest Champions League performances. For a player not known for his finishing ability, to net a European hat trick is some accomplishment. I could definitely get used to Ozil scoring on a regular basis.
Arsenal now top Group A on goal difference and have set themselves up nicely ahead of Saturday's game against Middlesbrough. I'll be at the Emirates this weekend for my second visit of the season, as I managed to get tickets in the Clock End. Here's hoping the Gunners can ride this momentum and keep pace in the league with another win.
Thanks for reading.