Phil Neville: Wenger should have kept Giroud on and taken Mesut Ozil off

Ozil Throw

Former Manchester United star says Arsene Wenger got his substitutions wrong.

The stage was set, and Mesut Ozil failed to perform once again.

You could almost forgive his two displays against Bayern Munich last season, his first with the club, but he came into this match in fine form, on the back of three goals and two assists in his previous five games.

He disappointed against Monaco, with Arsenal well beaten 3-1, booked for his troubles, but managed to last all 90 minutes.

Former Manchester United and Everton defender Phil Neville believed the decision to keep him on the pitch was an error from Arsene Wenger. He believed instead, that the Frenchman should have kept Olivier Giroud on.


Olivier Giroud had entered the game in even more sparkling form than Ozil, scoring five goals and providing three assists in his last seven games.

This was a night for him to forget. There was one horrific miss in the second half which he may struggle to get over. Arsenal had just gone 2-0 down, and the ball rebounded to him in the box with the goalkeeper sprawling, and he lashed it wildly over the bar as his technique let him down and he leaned too far backwards.

Minutes later he was substituted, but Neville's point that his goalscoring ability could have been needed later on was a fair one, especially with Ozil contributing nothing.

Arsenal did get back into the game briefly through Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, before being caught on the counter attack again. Whether they would have been better off keeping Giroud on is open to debate, but the decision they did make clearly did not work.

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