By Will Butcher
Football Insider analyses three talking points from Arsenal’s 2-2 draw against Paris Saint-Germain in their latest Champions League encounter at the Emirates on Wednesday evening.
Strength in depth
Arsene Wenger made four changes from the 1-1 draw against Manchester United on Sunday, as the likes of Olivier Giroud and David Ospina were given a chance from the off. With the French champions standing in their way, the Gunners’ fringe players impressed under the lights at the Emirates. Giroud scored from the penalty spot and Ospina kept out PSG’s late onslaught, while Kieran Gibbs was solid on the left side of Arsene Wenger’s defence. The unfortunate Alex Iwobi was unlucky to concede a late own goal, but looked sharp when in possession. With the likes of Per Mertesacker, Santi Cazorla, Lucas Perez and Hector Bellerin all sidelined, it was an impressive performance from Wenger’s patched-up side.
Giroud should be given chance to lead line again
Giroud proved his case for a starting spot in just his second start of the season, as he tussled with PSG’s centre-backs Thiago Silva and Marquinihos. The France international was on target again for the Gunners as he converted from the penalty spot to score his fifth goal in six games, following Marco Verratti’s foul on Alexis Sanchez. The 30-year-old offers Arsenal an extra dimension in attack with his strength and aerial ability, but possesses the technical ability to join in with his side’s possession-based style, too.
Time for Xhaka to be given run
Switzerland international Granit Xhaka should be given a run in Arsenal’s starting XI, after Francis Coquelin failed to convince the Arsenal doubters with his display on Wednesday night. The Frenchman has failed to live up to the heights of last season, that saw him become a mainstay of Arsene Wenger’s side. On multiple occasions, Coquelin lost the ball in the middle of the park and was easily surpassed by the likes of Blaise Matuidi and Marco Verratti. Former Borussia Monchengladbach captain Xhaka was once again left on the substitute’s bench on Wednesday. But Arsenal’s number 29 has scored twice from long range and wowed Gunners fans with an intricate array of passing since his summer arrival. As Coquelin’s form continues to dip, Wenger should consider Xhaka as a replacement.
In other Arsenal news, this injury-prone star has made a huge claim about Arsenal’s position in the knockout stage.