Petr Cech noticed a big difference in Arsenal during their 4-0 Europa League thrashing of Slavia Prague on Thursday, hailing the ‘efficiency’ of Mikel Arteta’s side in quotes reported by iSport.
Talk about ruthless.
Seven days after wasting a hatful of chances during a galling 1-1 first leg draw at the Emirates, Arsenal were a team transformed in the Czech capital.
The game – and the tie – was as good as dead within 24 minutes, Nicolas Pepe, Alexandre Lacazette and the seemingly unplayable Bukayo Saka tearing apart a side who hadn’t lost at home in 18 months.
And Cech, the former Gunners goalkeeper, believes Mikel Arteta’s side took a leaf out of Slavia’s book at the Sinobo Stadium, seizing each and every opportunity in a display of dead-eyed finishing.
“Arsenal have changed. Efficiency makes a big difference, at this stage your opponent will punish you,” said Cech, who now works behind the scenes at Chelsea.
“They defeated Slavia a bit with (Slavia’s) own weapons.”
Given that Lacazette appeared to be channeling his inner Storm Trooper last week, wildly firing off target with the goal at his mercy, Arteta will have been thrilled to see the Frenchman bounce back in style yesterday.
Adding a thumping second-half finish to his early penalty in Prague, Lacazette now has 17 goals in 38 games this season.