Bayern completes Arsenal's Euro misery with another 5-1 win
ABS-CBN Sports on Mar 08, 2017 11:06 AM
Bayern's Arturo Vidal scores his side's fifth goal past Arsenal goalkeeper David Ospina during the Champions League round of 16 second leg soccer match between Arsenal and Bayern Munich at the Emirates Stadium in London, Tuesday, March 7, 2017. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
ROB HARRIS, AP Global Soccer Writer
LONDON (AP) — With a second 5-1 rout in three weeks, Bayern Munich completed Arsenal's humiliation on a night of protests against manager Arsene Wenger.
Whether Wenger gets a chance to return to the Champions League next season remains unclear, as his latest contract will expire at the end of this season after 21 years at the club.
His team's heaviest-ever loss at the Emirates Stadium, completing a 10-2 aggregate loss on Tuesday as the German champions reached the quarterfinals, will only heighten demands by pockets of supporters for Wenger to go.
Asked if he will manage Arsenal again in the Champions League, Wenger replied: "I don't know ... I am here to talk about football not my future."
It is Wenger's failure to deliver Arsenal's first European Cup that has diminished his standing among fans who once lauded him as a coaching revolutionary.
For the seventh consecutive season, Arsenal has exited the Champions League in the Round of 16 and it has still only reached the final once, back in 2006.
Wenger deflected questions about his own future by reprimanding Tuesday's referee for what the Frenchman called "unexplainable and scandalous" decisions.
And there was no sympathy from Bayern, with the five-time European champions joining in the derision by tweeting: "What time is it? Yep, it's ten to!"
The night's other game saw the first-leg score replicated as Real Madrid beat Napoli 3-1 to reach the last eight for a seventh successive season.
But Bayern enjoyed such an emphatic advantage that Arsenal had an uphill task. A glimmer of hope, though, came in the 20th minute when Theo Walcott beat goalkeeper Manuel Neuer at his near post.
Nothing went Arsenal's way after that. Walcott was denied a potential penalty and then Koscielny was dismissed after the referee initially prepared to show the captain a yellow card for bringing down Robert Lewandowski 10 minutes into the second half.
"The game was difficult until the penalty," said Bayern coach Carlo Ancelotti, who is looking to win the Champions League with a third different club after successes with AC Milan and Real Madrid. "We were too open. They pushed as we expected. We were not so clear with the ball as we usually are."
Arsenal didn't do itself any favors, going into freefall as Bayern tore Wenger's side apart with a clinical attacking masterclass. Arjen Robben netted after a poor clearance by goalkeeper David Ospina in the 68th minute, and Douglas Costa added another in the 78th before Arturo Vidal scored twice in the space of five minutes.
"Bayern can be a good side but tonight they can also say thank you to the decisions of the referee," Wenger said. "It leaves me very angry, very frustrated ... (the referee) killed the game."
As Bayern marched into the quarterfinals for the sixth consecutive year, Arsenal cannot be certain it will even be back in the competition next season. Not only are the Gunners far from winning the Premier League for the first time since 2004 but they are out of the top four.
The objectives are clearer for Bayern: collecting a fifth successive Bundesliga title and winning the Champions League for the first time since its Wembley success in London in 2013.
"We just want to keep chugging along," Neuer said. "We don't intend on letting up."