x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

Five star Arsenal crush Fener flops

Arsenal score five in Turkey to go top of Group G in the Champions League.

Aaron Ramsey, left, celebrates his goal and Arsenal's fifth with Emmanuel Eboue with the Gunners rampant in Turkey.
Aaron Ramsey, left, celebrates his goal and Arsenal's fifth with Emmanuel Eboue with the Gunners rampant in Turkey.

ISTANBUL // Arsenal stormed to a 5-2 victory over Fenerbahce in a pulsating Champions League match which put the London side at the top of Group G. Emmanuel Adebayor fired the Gunners ahead after ten minutes, slotting the ball calmly past the Fenerbahce goalkeeper Volkan Demirel after Cesc Fabregas picked him out with a pass which cut through the home defence. Fabregas repeated the feat a minute later, this time finding Theo Walcott, who skipped over Demirel to score from a narrow angle.

Fener grabbed a goal back after 19 minutes when a shot from Semih Senturk deflected off the defender Mikael Silvestre into his own goal. Within three minutes, Abou Diaby had restored the visitors' two-goal cushion going into half-time. The home side had gained the upper hand in the latter stages of the first half when striker Daniel Guiza had three goal scoring chances. He put the ball in the net in the 31st minute but was ruled offside, shot wide on the 40th minute, and two minutes later the Arsenal goalkeeper Manuel Almunia frustrated him again.

The second half brought more woe for Fenerbahce, with a strong shot from Alex Song extending Arsenal's lead to 4-1 within four minutes of the restart. The Turkish team's frustration was heightened in the 67th minute when three goal scoring efforts were blocked first by Almunia and then by two Arsenal defenders in succession. Guiza pulled a goal back in the 78th minute when he lobbed a shot over Almunia, but the young substitute Aaron Ramsey sealed Fenerbahce's misery, scoring Arsenal's fifth in stoppage time with a well struck shot from the edge of the area.

The Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger paid tribute to his players after the game. "We came here and tried to dictate the game in a very heated atmosphere. I'm very proud of that," he said. "Our pace movement and technique made all the difference". The result kept Arsenal top of the group on seven points, followed by Dynamo Kiev on five points after their 1-0 victory over Porto. Fenerbahce stay at the bottom on one point.