Champions League play-off: Fenerbahce v Arsenal - LIVE! - Live coverage - The Independent

Champions League play-off: Fenerbahce v Arsenal - LIVE!

By Jack de Menezes


by Jack de Menezes on Aug 21, 2013 at 1:13 PM



Welcome to The Independent's live coverage of tonight's Champions League play-off first leg between Fenerbahce and Arsenal live from the Sukru Saracoglu Stadium.


We want to hear what you have to say. To do this, click the 'Make a comment' button below and we'll post the best ones.

Follow minute-by-minute updates below...
  • 10 mins: A fairly slow start - perhaps exactly what Arsenal needed. Fenerbahce now working into the box, but Kuyt can't find Sow and Koscielny clears. First danger signs for the Gunners.
    8/21/2013 6:56:47 PM
  • 12 mins: The Fenerbahce fans get the boo's going as the Arsenal back four exchange passes. They eventually give the ball away when they go forward, and Fenerbahce now into Arsenal's half but again the move comes to nothing. Very, very slow at the moment.
    8/21/2013 6:58:46 PM
  • 14 mins: Rosicky just nudges the ball into Wilshere's path and he looks towards goal, before feeding Gibbs out wide. Corner, and Giroud goes up for it but can't connect. Still Arsenal, but Wilshere loses possession and is down injured.
    8/21/2013 7:00:31 PM
  • 15 mins: Didn't look like much, Wilshere ran into four defenders and fell over his own legs really. He's back up on his feet, but there's a bit of a limp as he heads to the touchline.
    8/21/2013 7:02:01 PM
  • 17 mins: Wilshere's back on and jogging back into possession. Ramsey feeds Giroud into the box who plays it back to Cazorla. He shoots...but it' blocked, and they work it back into the box, where Alves' clearance is deflected back towards goal by Giroud. Demirel does well to save it though.
    8/21/2013 7:04:00 PM
  • 19 mins: Cazorla wriggles through the defene and plays in Walcott, but Demirel gets there first. The ball comes back in onto Giroud's head, but his floated effort misses the target. Good chance from Arsenal and they're definitely the more lively of the two sides.
    8/21/2013 7:05:27 PM
  • 21 mins: Fenerbahce finally work a chance, with Sow's cross deflected for a corner. It comes in to Alves, but is eventually cleared away and the chance is gone.
    8/21/2013 7:07:48 PM
  • 23 mins: Irtegun sends in a cross, but it misses all three attackers and Arsenal break. Wilshere loses possession though and Fenerbahce counter. Sow is offside though and Arsenal are awarded a free-kick when the hosts looked to be away.
    8/21/2013 7:09:37 PM
  • 25 mins: Walcott has a run towards goal, and a miscommunication sees the ball fall for Ramsey, whose first time effort just go's across goal and wide of the far post from the edge of the box.
    8/21/2013 7:11:13 PM
  • 26 mins: Wilshere gives away a foul after bringing don Webo, but Szczesny comes rushing out to claim it well.
    8/21/2013 7:12:04 PM
  • 27 mins: Arsenal counter through Rosicky, but his ball asks far to much from Walcott and it rolls out for a throw. Bit of a waste that pass.
    8/21/2013 7:12:48 PM
  • 28 mins: Walcott and Cazorla are looking the most threatening so far, but there hasn't been a clear-cut chance yet. Each time Fenerbahce look to attack they make the half-way line before losing possession.
    8/21/2013 7:15:44 PM
  • 29 mins: Webo is booked for a high boot that connects with Koscielny's face. the Frenchman is down receiving treatment and there's a fair amount of blood. Just what Arsenal need, to lose another defender...
    8/21/2013 7:16:53 PM
  • 32 mins: That's Koscielny done. He's up on his feet and able to walk off, but they can't stop the blood from pouring from his forehead. Carl Jenkinson comes on in his place, with Sagna switching to centre-back. If only Wenger signed a defender eh?
    8/21/2013 7:19:00 PM
  • 34 mins: The Turkish fans ramp up the noise, but it's still Arsenal with all the possession. They're not converting it though and Fenerbahce are looking to counter as soon as they get the ball.
    8/21/2013 7:21:18 PM
  • that should be red for that challenge to the head!
    8/21/2013 7:21:32 PM
  • 36 mins: Rosicky puts Walcott through again, but Kadlec just gets a foot in to nudge it out for a corner. It's cleared away though, and Arsenal have to rebuild from the back once again.
    8/21/2013 7:22:44 PM
  • Jack Wilshere vies for the ball with Pierre Webo

    8/21/2013 7:23:38 PM
  • 40 mins: Wilshere receives the ball out wide on the left, but his cross is to Giroud and no one else. The midfield needs to help the striker and flood the box for those balls. Fenerbahce return the favour, and attack down the right, but despite working into a good position they lose the ball and it's a goal-kick.
    8/21/2013 7:24:40 PM
  • 42 mins: Chance... And what a chance. The Arsenal midfield combines down the right, and Ramsey gives it to Rosicky whose searching cross is knocked back into Ramsey's path. He gives it to Walcott rather than takes a shot at goal, and Walcott just delays his effort too long which allows the defence to recover and clear the ball. Should've been a goal there.
    8/21/2013 7:29:40 PM
  • 44 mins: Kuyt gets across to block Gibbs' cross, but it's all Arsenal right now as we approach half-time. Three added minutes, can Arsenal steal a goal before the break?
    8/21/2013 7:31:30 PM
  • 45 +1 mins: Wilshere slips a ball into the path of Giroud, but he's on his left foot and has Alves for company, and his shoot balloons over the goal. That could've that chance, but it wasn't an easy one by all means.
    8/21/2013 7:32:48 PM
  • 45+3 mins: And that's half-time.
    8/21/2013 7:33:58 PM
  • Not a lot to write home about after that 45 minutes. Arsenal should probably be in front but they will have been happy to have settled into the game well and dominate possession. Fenerbahce are being overrun in midfield, meaning they have very little going on up front and their front three are looking frustrated.
    8/21/2013 7:36:12 PM
  • Giroud looks to be struggling up on his own. Arsenal have long had a striker who can provide that moment of magic; a Bergkamp, Henry or van Persie springs to mind. Giroud just doesn't seem to have that spark, at least not tonight. You can see why Wenger wanted Suarez...
    8/21/2013 7:37:47 PM
  • Looks like usual. Loads of possession missed opportunities and another injury. Forever hoping...
    8/21/2013 7:37:52 PM
  • Wenger will be happy that they haven't conceded, but surely Arsenal fans aren't happy if that's the mentality their side are taking? The injury to Koscielny was quite similar to that of Gibbs' on Saturday, so he shouldn't be out for too long, and he's suspended for Saturday's clash with Fulham anyway so he'll likely be back for next Tuesday's second leg.
    8/21/2013 7:39:36 PM
  • Our man in the Sukru Saracoglu James Olley:


    8/21/2013 7:42:34 PM
  • Cazorla has injected a pace to the Arsenal midfield that they lacked on Saturday

    8/21/2013 7:45:49 PM
  • Gokhan Gonul has come on for Irtegun, and we're back underway.
    8/21/2013 7:49:06 PM
  • 46 mins: Meireles didn't have the best of halves in the opening 45, and his first touch in the second is to kick the ball into touch. Not the restart he would've wanted.
    8/21/2013 7:50:20 PM
  • 47 mins: Meireles invites Sow to have a run at goal but he shows too much of the ball to Sagna and a sliding challenge dispossesses the forward. Arsenal break and Ramsey wins a corner. Walcott takes it, and it's headed beyond goal. Comes to nothing. Same as the first half, it seems...
    8/21/2013 7:51:55 PM
  • 49 mins: Arsenal are dispossessed in midfield and Kuyt blasts a shot at goal. It goes over, but not by much, and Szczesny was sprawling back to try and save it.
    8/21/2013 7:53:14 PM
  • 51 mins: GOAL FOR ARSENAL!!
    8/21/2013 7:54:40 PM
  • 51 mins: Ramsey looks to have no options on the edge of the box, but Walcott makes a run and Ramsey finds him behind the defence. You wouldn't blame the England man for having a go at goal, but he passes across and it's KIERAN GIBBS to smashes the ball into the roof of the net. The elation on his face is clear to see and that's a crucial away goal for the Gunners.
    8/21/2013 7:56:15 PM
  • 53 mins: And it's nearly a second for Arsenal. Wilshere charges into the box and Walcott takes it off his feet, hitting it with his left foot. Alves gets in to block it, and Walcott's follow up is saved by the keeper. Chance gone.
    8/21/2013 7:57:55 PM
  • 54 mins: Straight up the other end, Webo beats Sagna in the air and it falls between Szczesny and Sow. The goalkeeper gets there first to clear the ball but gets a boot for his efforts and he's down hurt. A bit of treatment though and hes back on his feet - thankfully - and Arsenal are awarded a free-kick.
    8/21/2013 7:59:36 PM
  • 57 mins: Walcott and Rosicky are starting to combine well, and Ramsey has begun the second half tremendously, but he's just penalised for hand ball as he tries to jink past the Fenerbahce defence. The game has definitely opened up.
    8/21/2013 8:01:51 PM
  • Injury news on Koscielny: The cut he suffered in the first half is apparently a rather nasty cut, and Koscielny is still having stitches put in to try and stem the bleeding.

    8/21/2013 8:03:26 PM
  • 60 mins: Jenkinson gets down the right but his cross is straight into the hands of Demirel. Fenerbahce are preparing £11m signing Emmanuel Emenike to come on in a hope to get them back into the game.
    8/21/2013 8:04:56 PM
  • 61 mins: Wilshere beats two Fenerbahce defenders before lashing a right-footed shot at Demirel, who palms the ball away to safety. Pierre Webo is replaced by Emmanuel Emenike,  who gets a big cheer from the home fans.
    8/21/2013 8:06:19 PM
  • 64 mins: GOAL FOR ARSENAL!!
    8/21/2013 8:07:29 PM
  • 64 mins: It's Aaron Ramsey this time, picking up the ball in the Fenerbahce half and driving towards goal. He fires a right-footed shot back to the near post and Demirel makes a howler in letting it deflect over him and into the net.
    8/21/2013 8:08:47 PM
  • 66 mins: Emenike has his first shot and wins a corner just to remind Arsenal this game is far from over. From the cross, Alves takes out Mertesacker and the big German screams out in pain. Not another defensive injury?? He's back up, and all seems well. Not for Alves though, he's got a yellow card for his part.
    8/21/2013 8:10:35 PM
  • 67 mins: Another chance for Fenerbahce, as Meireles crosses for Sow. Flag's up for offside though, and he heads a good chance over anyway, but Arsenal have just relaxed a little.
    8/21/2013 8:11:41 PM
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