Tuesday and Wednesday Champions League nights are always tense, and the past week was a testament to that. The world watched as Madrid defeated weak PSG and how City succumbed to a Basel defeat despite moving to the next round. It was a difficult pill to swallow for Tottenham as Juventus won at the Wembley Stadium despite Spurs having the edge at several moments of the game. In the Europa League, Arsenal and Atletico both merited a win, but should Wenger stay at Arsenal?
These are the three lessons we learnt last week…
- PSG are not close to winning the UCL
There are performances that are expected from the top clubs in the world, and PSG showed they are not close to being considered one of the best clubs with their performance on Tuesday. This was a night when PSG were meant to show the character they are made of. Many believed they would turn out a brilliant performance because their Brazilian star man Neymar was injured. Also, many believed the speed of Mbappe and Di Maria would unsettle Madrid’s defence. However, none of these surfaced. PSG didn’t trouble Madrid at all, except the unsportsman-like charcaer Cavani and Alves exuded toward Casemiro and Ronaldo respectively. Madrid wholly deserved their win and all the credits.
- Spurs are Getting there
Like PSG, Tottenham faced one of the best ever teams in Europe. Unlike PSG, they showed great character and a brilliant performance. After the Madrid match, Julian Draxler of PSG criticized the Parisians manager of not playing to win. Following their defeat to Juve, Son told the media their Juve didn’t deserve to win the match; such is the difference in the performance of the teams. Spurs are a testament to the fact that you don’t need to spend over 1 billion euros to assemble a team like PSG have done. While they might not win the UCL next year, they are getting closer to become one of the very best teams in Europe.
- Wenger Knows His Game
Many would be surprised if the Frenchman stays beyond this season. But, the media won’t be; the writing is getting written on the wall. It has always been the case with Arsenal that they seem to offer the Frenchman a new contract if he performs a bit well in the closing stages of the season. It was the case in 2014 and 2017 when the Frenchman won the FA cup to keep his job for more years. After their win against Milan at San Siro, the Arsenal board would now be thinking of extending Wenger’s stay which could be fatal for the team. Nonetheless, one has to say that Arsene Wenger knows how to play his game. After being defeated in four successive games, he knew he only needed to beat a big team like Milan who hadn’t lost in 13 games and hadn’t conceded in 6 to keep the Gunners’ hopes alive. On that note, he’s succeeding.
The return leg at the Emirates will go a long way in determining the future of the Frenchman with the Gunners. We will bring you another round of ‘lessons learnt’ when Chelsea face Barcelona, United face Sevilla, and the rest of the games in Europe next week.