Manchester United legend Paul Scholes has written in The Independent that Arsenal could play so well against AS Monaco only because the pressure was off.
The Premier League outfit registered a brilliant 2-0 victory over Monaco at Stade Louis II in the second leg of the Champions League last-16 tie on Tuesday.
However, it was not enough for Arsenal to progress to the quarter-finals of Europe’s premier club competition, as they lost the tie on away goals’ rule.
The Gunners’ 3-1 defeat at the Emirates Stadium in North London last month eventually proved to be too much for them to overcome.
Former United midfielder Scholes has now stated that Arsenal could step up their game in Monaco because they were expected to attack.
“In Monaco, Arsenal showed what they can do when the shackles were off and they had to attack,” the 40-year-old wrote in The Independent.
“It was a brilliant performance against a very average team, even if they did not get the third goal they needed. Typical Arsenal, that when the pressure is off, they played their best football.”
It is an interesting comment from Scholes which many Arsenal fans may find hard to accept, but perhaps there is some truth.
Arsenal are an attacking team, and they are at their best when they have to score goals to win games.
The Gunners needed to score at least three goals in Monaco to progress to the quarter-finals, which meant that they had to go on the front foot right from the start.
Arsene Wenger’s side did indeed play very well in the second leg, which beggars the question why they could not so the same in the first leg at the Emirates.