Wednesday February 15, 2012 Last 16 Finished Stadio Giuseppe Meazza

AC Milan 4 - 0 Arsenal

  • Boateng 15’
  • Robinho 38’, 49’
  • Ibrahimovic 79’ (pen.)

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  1. Milan crush Arsenal

    Milan crush Arsenal

    Milan thrashed a hapless Arsenal side 4-0 in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 clash at the San Siro. More

  • Live Commentary

    • AC Milan
    • Arsenal
    • - Can Arsenal bounce back for the FA Cup this weekend, and in their chase for fourth, or will that derail their season? Milan, meanwhile, look a good bet for a place in the final - with players missing, they were pretty, pretty good... HAVE YOUR SAY!
    • 90+3 There's the whistle - a proper thumping by Milan over Arsenal.
    • 90+2 Pato is in space on the right, he's in but so is Ibra, a cut-back and it's five but Pato shoots, Szczesny saving and Ibra with his head in his hands.
    • 90+2 Ramsey finds himself in space down the left but his cross is claimed by Abbiati.
    • 90+1 Emanuelson is in acres of space but he plays a strange shot that goes nowhere near goal with Ibra and Ambrosini free.
    • 90+1 Two minutes added time.
    • 90' Another misplaced Hollywood pass from Aaron Ramsey. Goal kick.
    • 89' Pato takes down a long one but his first touch is shaky and Djourou can shepherd it back to Szczesny.
    • 87' Good cross from Vermaelen which RvP and Henry can't meet. Arteta is on it now but his ball is wayward and Milan have a free-kick.
    • 86' Abbiati and Antonini combine to clear the second successive corner but Pato can't get past Djourou. First decent thing he's done since coming on.
    • 85' Super cross from Oxlade-Chamberlain and Van Persie angles a downward header but a smart low stop from Abbiati.
    • 84' MILAN SUB: Robinho off, Pato on for six minutes with his side 4-0 up. Nice work if you can get it.
    • 83' Henry is onside but it bounces behind him on the left so he has to hold it up instead of run on to it. Arsenal hold it reasonably well and Sagna can cross, headed as far as Rosicky whose volley goes out for a throw. A throw. He's been poor today, he really has.
    • 82' Van Persie goes down like he's been electrocuted after a minor tangle with Mexes. Nope.
    • 81' Ambrosini goes in late on Arteta and he is booked. A suspension for him - may as well get it in there for the dead rubber in three weeks.
    • 80' GOAL MILAN! 4-0. Ibra deserves a goal and, having won that penalty, takes it. He's scored in every Champions League match he's played his season and he continues that with a drilled low finish to the left.
    • 79' PENALTY MILAN! Clumsy challenge by Djourou on Ibra and it's a penalty. Yellow card.
    • 78' Good cross by Abate, Ibra meets at the far post and his header drops off Sagna for a corner.
    • 77' Ibra wide left to Emanuelson, Vermaelen clears and it stops in the turf before going out to he races across to clear his own clearance.
    • 76' For once Milan's defence get their lines wrong and the ball drops to Van Persie - but his half-volley is straight at Abbiati, on his weaker right foot.
    • 75' Oxlade-Chamberlain is offside as he brings the ball down on the right, also a foul on Antonini.
    • 74' Nocerino with a lofted ball over the top but Robinho can't get ahead of Sagna this time. Goal kick.
    • 73' Ibra almost takes a high ball down with one of his kung-fu kicks but Song nicks it away.
    • 72' Song is the first Arsenal player to see the colour of his shirt after a cynical trip on Ibra.
    • 71' Decent spell of passing for Arsenal, who have some shape now, but Henry's cross is nodded clear by Silva.
    • 69' MILAN SUB: Ambrosini on for Boateng.
    • 68' Loose ball over the top by Ramsey, who has not played well at all today.
    • 67' Boateng's clearance rattles into Van Persie. Ow. But he is fine.
    • 66' ARSENAL SUB: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is on for Gibbs - not sure entirely but I would say Song to centre-half and Vermaelen out of harm's way at left back.
    • 66' Song on the ball, low to Henry, wonderful flick on and a wicked volley over the shoulder by Van Persie - but what a save by Abbiati! Low and firm hand to tip it around the post!
    • 65' Van Persie swings the corner in but it lands for Ramsey, who is not great in the air: it bounces off his head and well wide.
    • 64' Milan concede a poor corner as Silva gets his backpass all wrong.
    • 63' Van Persie stands over this... but it's taken short to Vermaelen, whose shot hits the wall and is claimed by Abbiati.
    • 62' Rosicky on the charge, Mexes pulls his shirt but the ref plays advantage - none is forthcoming so play is called back and the defender booked.
    • 61' Robinho is in down the right now but he can't get cross nor shot in and Arsenal clear.
    • 60' Milan just stroking it about now. This is going to be a long half hour for Arsenal unless their creative players snap out of this creative malaise.
    • 59' Abbiati is able to punch and Milan could break - Emanuelson on the run, he sees Antonini and finds him in loads of space but - on his weaker left foot - he puts it well wide.
    • 58' Gibbs finally gets forward, taking on Abate and winning a corner. The defence is up for this.
    • 57' Ibra commits a foul leaving Djourou in a heap.
    • 56' Meanwhile, Boateng is in on the right but he miscontrols uncharacteristically. Arsenal packed the midfield but it has had no impact - at all.
    • 55' Still no sign of the Ox. Has Wenger made a mess of this selection? I know Djourou's been poor but should he have shunted Vermaelen inside? Seems a mistake. FOLLOW ON TWITTER!
    • 54' Song to Gibbs, back to Song as Arsenal try to get Henry and RvP on the ball. Good defensive work from Boateng though and Milan have it back.
    • 53' Song robs Boateng before he can get near the blundering defensive duo and Arsenal come forward. Rosicky lofts one in for RvP but Silva blocks his path, hitting the deck like a right softie in the process.
    • 52' Gibbs wide left wins a throw off Abate. Arsenal need to just keep possession but as soon as they have it they go back to their hapless defenders: Djourou and Vermaelen almost give it away under no pressure.
    • 51' Milan want more but a heavy touch from Emanuelson sees their latest move break down on the edge of the box.
    • 50' Vermaelen has been terrible today - that is never a goal if he doesn't fall on his backside under no pressure.
    • 49' Ibra on the left tries a one-two with Robinho, Vermaelen falls over and it opens up for Robinho to drive a fierce low goal inside the post!
    • 48' Henry is hugging the left now, getting his first touch. Arsenal keep possession until Rosicky gives it away.
    • 47' Milan start confidently, going for Arsenal from the off as Ibra almost finds Boateng again.
    • 46' The second half is underway!
    • - ARSENAL SUB: Yup, Henry on at half-time!! Walcott off. Still too narrow IMO. I'd have taken Rosicky off.
    • - And, interestingly: @auspom84: "arsenal are a shadow of themselves where the hell is henry? he's Arsenals game changer so get him on the field"
    • - Sooo many tweets from you - here are some: @niall_lawless: "Djourou constantly makes the same mistake,makes the first move and lets his man get away. He must think its still valentines"; how about Ibra? any1 still not convinced about him playin the big games? @PjKoul: "2nd game in 3 years that he's tearing ars apart"; @zanzibar2000: "ibra is man of the match" FOLLOW ON TWITTER!
    • - Oh well, Arsenal appear to have frozen on the big stage that is the San Siro. Intimidating an amphitheatre as it is, the Gunners have been all over the place defensively - Vermaelen has had a bit of a shocker, and Djourou a mess since he's come on. Both goals were excellent though. What do you think about the half? Milan good, or Arsenal bad? HAVE YOUR SAY ON TWITTER!
    • 45+3 Anyway, the ref's last act of the half was that outrage and it's Milan 2-0 Arsenal. A tough half-time talk beckons for Monsieur Wenger.
    • 45+2 Antonini is, disgracefully, carded for that collision. What is this ref thinking? It was a through ball, which he met first - the keeper was brave to rush out. What is he supposed to do, disappear?
    • 45+1 Ibra with a superb through ball from deep, Djourou completely befuddled by that and Antonini is through but Szczesny flies out to gather and both collide! Great keeping, brave from both men.
    • 45+1 Ibra with a brilliant show of strength to shrug off Djourou, who has been dragged into the Milan half and is well out of position - super ball to release Boateng, this could be a third but he smacks it into the side netting!
    • 45' Two minutes added time being played. Van Persie has hardly had a touch. Bring Henry at half-time on for the inevitable goal?
    • 44' ARSENAL SUB: Djourou is on for the injured Koscielny.
    • 43' Robinho over the top for Emanuelson but he went too soon and it floats over to keeper. Rosicky tries to find Van Persie but Milan have a full selection of defenders.
    • 42' Milan just piling it on Arsenal now as Djourou readies himself - Koscielny is not going to continue it seems.
    • 41' Milan are buzzing now and Arsenal just want the break - Antonini with a super cross, Ibra is unmarked flying in but his header is blocked by Sagna.
    • 40' Koscielny is limping now. Not ideal for Arsenal. That goal came from a counter inspired by a very loose pass from Rosicky, when Arsenal had men over. Tsk tsk. Unleash the Ox!
    • 39' Ibra was not offside; he was, however, brilliant as he got away from Sagna, let the ball roll under his right boot and played a surprise cross with his left that Robinho arrived to bury. Arsenal have been poor.
    • 38' GOAL MILAN! 2-0! Ibra with a superb piece of skill to race away down the left, lovely cross and Robinho with a clever angled header as he arrived late in the box. Arsenal think Ibra was offside, he was on - Koscielny played him on.
    • 38' Terrible pass from Rosicky, telegraphed to Abate when Walcott was in acres. Acres! Milan have it back after....
    • 37' Still Milan come and Boateng has it in the box, no-one challenges, but he can't get the shot away. Arsenal break down the left, Gibbs and Ramsey combine, wide to Sagna but his cross is poor.
    • 36' Ramsey with a backheel but too cute, not accurate enough. Milan clear and Vermaelen slips! Robinho could be in but Arsenal regroup and clear.
    • 36' Now KPB hits the deck but the ref waves him on to his feet. One of my cheeky colleagues has claimed his goal was the best thing he ever did for Spurs.
    • 35' Nocerino lofts it over to Ibra, who handballs then fouls Koscielny and then claims he was elbowed. Koscielny lets him know what he thinks.
    • 34' Walcott is shoved off the ball too easily by Antonini, he sends it across, flicked to Nocerino but his ambitious volley is well wide.
    • 33' More good stuff from Milan but Song clears from Antonini.
    • 32' There was a chance for Ibra to send Nocerino through but he picked a scooped, high pass - which he overhit - when the low ball was on. Nocerino lets him know.
    • 31' Ibra is again offside after Koscielny gets caught on the ball by Robinho - he wasn't expecting that, the Swede.
    • 30' Ibra is called offside, much to the derision of the home fans but he was a yard or two behind the well-drilled defence.
    • 29' Almost a good decision as a slip from Boateng denies a possible opportunity from Ibra's knock-down. Ramsey has a chance to clear but gives it away, trying to play a clever drag-back to Walcott.
    • 28' Koscielny thinks it's harsh that he is penalised for a challenge in the middle of the park. Sent wide to Abate as Milan go with a posession approach on this set play.
    • 27' Milan don't fully clear the corner and Arsenal build down the right with Sagna. Now Rosicky feeds Ramsey but, with the shot on, he delays to try the one-two, by which point Silva has intervened.
    • 27' Rosicky with a nice ball to release Ramsey, who falls over but it sends Van Persie through: denied by a Mexes slide. Corner.
    • 26' Walcott with some sterling defensive work to win a throw off Antonini back in his half. Van Persie protects the ball from Silva, who fouls him.
    • 25' Meanwhile Arsenal have managed to win a free-kick 35 yards from goal. Van Persie lofts it far post to an unmarked Koscielny but it's too high to generate any power and he can only flick it into Abbiati's arms.
    • 24' Koscielny lets the ball run for Vermaelen to clear, for some reasons he leaves it for Szczesny with Ibra on his tail and Vermaelen has lost it but brave from the keeper to dive in at the Swede's feet! The flag is waved... A foul by Ibra, but there was nothing in that.
    • 23' A touch of respite for the Gunners as they manage to win a throw deep in the Milan half.
    • 22' Abate drills in a low cross-shot that Rosicky blocks. Milan swamping them at the moment.
    • 21' INCHES OVER FROM NOCERINO! It would have been some goal as he rasped in a rising drive from the edge of the box.
    • 20' Antonini on the left but his cross is blocked. Now Ibra on the wing but his is cleared. All Milan now.
    • 19' Milan with a throw on the right after more progressive play - Boateng floats it in for Robinho but too long for him. Goal kick.
    • 18' Super pass by Rosicky to release RvP on the left wing, the angle too acute to shoot so he tries a cut-back that Mexes intercepts.
    • 17' Well Milan have their tails up now - they are Serie A champions and leaders, remember - as Ibra slides Robinho in, Arsenal defending that one well.
    • 16' WHAT A GOAL FOR MILAN! Kevin Prince Boateng with an incredible half-volley off the inside of the bar after he let the ball drop over his right shoulder before chesting it into his own path!
    • 15' Good defending by Sagna to shepherd the ball out following a run by Robinho.
    • 14' Arsenal scramble it clear after Emanuelson and Boateng dovetail nicely on the left; good spell now for Milan as they start to look more like the home side.
    • 13' Emanuelson's first touch is poor, to Sagna when he should have freed Robinho. Milan get the throw anyway, to Boateng who knocks it forward, lovely flick by Ibra AND EMANUELSON but he shanks the first-time effort well wide. Should have done better.
    • 12' MILAN SUB: Seedorf, who came back on after treatment, is trudging folornly off the pitch. Emanuelson on in place of his fellow Dutchman.
    • 11' Sagna intercepts a Nocerino pass and Arsenal can break again. Song slows it down as they look for a possession build-up. Sagna wide right again and his poor pass hits Antonini but lands for Walcott. Good pressure this... Then a poor pass from Sagna and Ramsey fouls Van Bommel.
    • 10' Arsenal break from the corner but - having done really well to buy space 30 yards out - Ramsey plays a dreadful ball to RvP wide left, behind him, overhit and out for a throw.
    • 9' A promising Milan attack results in Abate finding some space on the right wing but his shot is well wide. Deflected so a corner. Emanuelson, meanwhile, is warming up: Seedorf is down.
    • 8' Sagna feeds Walcott on the right but Antonini closes him down. It ends up back with Abbiati, who hits a rushed clearance, Walcott closing him down but he claims RvP's header.
    • 7' Arsenal counter from that corner and Walcott is in space centrally, but Ramsey cannot find him with a searching long pass.
    • 6' Ibra takes down Silva's long ball and buys a corner off Koscielny; poor corner from Milan though and it's out for a throw. Robinho wins a corner off Gibbs.
    • 5' Seedorf releases Boateng down the left, he drags Sagna in and backheels it back to Seedorf, space for him on the edge of the box but wide with Szczesny covering.
    • 4' Walcott on the move but Ramsey's pass is off, shepherded back to Abbiati by Silva.
    • 3' Arteta is taken out somewhat late by Nocerino. Free-kick Arsenal, no card.
    • 2' Rosicky steps into space, nice touch and shimmy but he slices the shot high and wide.
    • 1' Ibra plays Seedorf in but the old man is offside. Narrow formation for Arsenal, with Gibbs an advanced left back.
    • 1' Almost three minutes late, we are underway at the San Siro.
    • 19:47 Before kick-off Wenger said the San Siro pitch was "scandalous" - that's right, Milan looking to limit Arsenal's passing game.
    • 19:46 Delayed kick off. No explanation why that I can source...
    • 19:43 Teams are out. Cracking moustache-beard combo on Zlatan, looks like a musketeer.
    • 19:41 @jakubgruner: "what you got against Rosický, huh?:) he's gonna show some THINGS 2nite, i reckon!"; @SlavySlav: "I think it's ridiculous that Ox is on the bench. Gibbs starting is understandable as he has been in good form"; @HusseyG: "Good to see Gibbs trusted yeah but why isn't Oxlade-Chamberlain starting? It literally boggles the mind :/ " HAVE YOUR SAY ON TWITTER!
    • 19:40 MATCH ODDS: AC Milan 11/10, Arsenal 13/5, Draw 23/10.
    • 19:40 Tonight's ref is Viktor Kassai (Hungary).
    • 19:35 Still, aside from the aforementioned Spurs defeat, Milan also got crushed by Man Utd a few years ago. And they have problems against Ze English: they have been knocked out by English clubs in the last 16 Stage of their last three Champions League participations and have failed to score in five of the six matches played in those ties. Jinx?
    • 19:35 ... Milan defeated Arsenal in the 1994 Super Cup, drawing 0-0 at Highbury and winning 2-0 at the San Siro.
    • 19:35 FACT: Arsenal have played Milan once in the Champions League before, drawing 0-0 at home and winning 2-0 away in the San Siro; Arsenal have won both of their two Champions League games at the San Siro, beating Inter 5-1 and Milan 2-0. All good for Arsenal, except...
    • 19:35 FACT: In eight two-legged ties and one final (excluding the Super Cup), no Italian side have ever eliminated Arsenal in a knockout competition.
    • 19:30 Massimiliano Allegri: "We don't have an inferiority complex against English teams despite the defeats in recent seasons. Last year (against Tottenham) we made a big mistake in Milan but in the second game we deserved to win and go through. Arsenal are performing well and their attack is very dangerous."
    • 19:25 The decision to start Gibbs, away at Milan, seems risky. Many expected Vermaelen to play left-back and Djourou central in the absence of the injured Mertesacker. Perhaps Wenger values the chance of an away goal over keeping it tight? Stranger to me - and most of you it seems - is the benching of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. He is kept company by Thierry Henry, on his last loan game from New York. Can he be the hero again?
    • 19:20 Milan's injury list: Gattuso, Aquilani, Flamini, Strasser, Merkel and Cassano; back in training but not playing: Pato, Nesta, Yepes. At least Pato and Nesta are on the bench.
    • 19:15 Hello, I'll be your match commentator tonight, having just finished the icy delight that was Zenit 3-2 Benfica: kind of like a frozen mojito, with a sugary kick at the end. You can tweet me about The Ox's absence - and Gibbs's start - or even Milan's injury-ravaged line-up. I for one am disappointed that fellow Euro-Egyptian Stephan El-Shaarawy is not starting. FOLLOW @Reda_Eurosport ON TWITTER!
    • 19:10 Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is aware of how quickly his side's fortunes could change. After a topsy-turvy season, the Gunners finally seem to be on track again. Wenger ready for crunch period
    • 19:05 The Milan bench tonight reads: Amelia, Pato, Nesta ,Ambrosini, Bonera, Emanuelson, El Shaarawy
    • 19:00 Perhaps the most surpising aspect of the Arsenal team is the fact that the in-form Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is only on the bench. The Arsenal bench: Fabianski, Djourou, Benayoun, Coquelin, Henry, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Arshavin.
    • 18:55 The Milan team is: Abbiati; Mexes, Abate, Thiago Silva, Antonini; Van Bommel, Seedorf, Nocerino, Boateng; Ibrahimovic, Robinho
    • 18:50 The Arsenal team is already in – they have gone for: Szczesny; Sagna, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Gibbs; Rosicky, Arteta, Ramsey, Song Walcott; Van Persie.
    • 18:45 Hello and welcome to our live coverage from the San Siro as Milan host Arsenal in the first round of their last 16 Champions League tie.
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