CSKA Moscow are at the VEB Arena for Thurday’s Europa League meeting versus Arsenal. Viktor Goncharenko’s men succumbed to a 4-1 defeat to the Gunners during the first leg of the quarter-final at the Emirates Stadium, and they now require a big effort in front of their supporters in order to overturn the tie.
The last meeting between the sides was pretty much one-sided with Arsenal celebrating a 4-1 triumph. Aaron Ramsey opened the scoring for the Gunners in just the ninth minute of the game, but CSKA soon equalised from a wonderfully crafted free-kick from Aleksandr Golovin. Thereafter, the hosts took charge of the game with Ramsey and Alexandre Lacazette (brace) finding the net. Both Lacazette and Ramsey missed glorious opportunities to grab the match ball during the second period.
Players to watch for:
Aleksandr Golovin – CSKA Moscow: The Russian was CSKA’s sole sparkling light during their away trip to north London. The 21-year-old is capable of playing in either the frontline or central midfield, and he showcased some of his technical abilities in front of the Gunners’ faithful. With the limited possession, Golovin made a couple of positive runs towards the opposition backline, whilst grabbing a vital away goal through a sublime free-kick which David Beckham would have been proud of.
Aaron Ramsey – Arsenal: Ramsey has received a mixed reception from the Gunners fans over the years with a section of the supporters believing that the midfielder loses possession of the ball all too often. Despite this, the Welshman has the knack of scoring in crucial games, and he probably netted the goal of the Europa League season via his side foot volley against CSKA. Ramsey has scored three times in as many European games, and CSKA have to keep a close track of his nagging runs in order to restrict any further damage to the aggregate scoreline.