Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger did not receive the type of birthday present he was hoping for as he saw his side defeated by a late Robert Lewandowski goal at the Emirates last night to give Borussia Dortmund a 1-2 victory putting them level in Group F with Arsenal and Napoli.
While Premiership leaders Arsenal have been performing majestically on the domestic stage, many pessimists will say that apart from the match against Tottenham the Gunners have yet to face any tough opposition.
That was of course until Jürgen Klopp’s Borussia Dortmund returned to London hoping to erase the memory of their Champions League final defeat to Bayern Munich at Wembley Stadium earlier in the year.
Wenger who just turned 64-years-old was his teams hardest critic calling them “naïve” and “not being mature enough, “but should instead not take the defeat too harshly though as his team is still developing, and while some might say they were unfortunate that the winning goal scorer was still on the pitch after Polish international striker Lewandowski had hit Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny in the face with his elbow the Germans came to London with a plan that saw them winners on a rain-lashed north London night.
There are lessons to be learned from the defeat two of which concern his summer signings of Flamini and Özil, with Flamini missing the match due to a concussion he suffered in the match against Norwich on Saturday.
Özil who was in the headlines prior to the match after it was revealed in Sir Alex Fergusons autobiography that Wayne Rooney had told the former United boss to sign Özil only to be told by Ferguson to mind his own business.
Now we know that Wayne Rooney can spot talent when he sees it, German boss Jürgen Klopp knew very well that to give Özil room to play was an invitation to trouble so deliberately took the German international out of the game giving him very little space to weave his magic a tactic that will not have gone a miss when they take on Chelsea in the Capital One Cup next Tuesday, and when Liverpool come to town on November 2nd looking to knock Arsenal off the top of the table.
Wenger always knew that Group F would be tough but following the defeat last night he now knows that his side needs to either beat Napoli or Dortmund away in order to move forward to the knockout stages.