Thursday, July 31, 2008

Nasri to Shine As Arsenal Took Off Stuggart

Despite going 1-0 down and making a raft of substitutions, a young Arsenal side fought back to secure a 3-1 win over host side Stuttgart in front of a full house at the Mercedes-Benz-Stadion.

Arsene Wenger's young guns looked to be on the road to defeat after Yıldıray Baştürk gave the hosts the lead, but a startlingly energetic showing as the match wore on eventually saw the Gunners manage a convincing and well-deserved victory.

In the first half Robin Van Persie look somewhat active, but the likes of Adebayor were not at the races. Furthermore the central defence struggled against die Roten's long ball game. Debutant Samir Nasri, meanwhile, was impressive.

Several changes came at half time, with Vela and Bendtner gracing the pitch, but in fact the problems for Arsenal were still at the back as a rejuvenated Stuttgart side took the lead.

Baştürk opened the scoring 51 minutes in after being played through by Lanig to beat Fabianski.

Just eight minutes later, though, Carlos Vela equalised after good work from Nicklas Bendtner, and then Bendtner himself then capitalised on a give-and-go involving the young Mexican to grab his side's second.

Finally Jack Wilshere followed up his goals against the Burgenland XI with another fine strike, unmarked, to seal the win for Arsenal.

In the end Wenger has some food for thought, not least in terms of the defence and the status of some of his youngsters, but overall he can be very pleased with his side's showing.

VfB Stuttgart 1-3 Arsenal FC
1-0 Bastürk 51'
1-1 Vela 59'
1-2 Bendtner 65'
1-3 Wilshere 73'

VfB Stuttgart: Lehmann - Boulahrouz, Tasci, Delpierre (Träsch 46), Boka (Magnin 46) - Hilbert (Lanig 46), Pardo (Khedira 46), Simak (Bastürk 46), Hitzlsperger (Rudy 63) - Marica (Ljuboja 63), Gomez (Morys 63)

Arsenal: Almunia (Fabianski 46) - Sagna (G. Hoyte 78), Djourou (J. Hoyte 46), Gallas, Clichy - Walcott (Randall 78), Eboué (Ramsey 61), Denilson (Lansbury 86), Nasri (Wilshere 61) - van Persie (Vela 46 (Simpson 86)), Adebayor (Bendtner 46)

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