Arsenal fans have questioned the substitution of Super Eagles winger Alex Iwobi by head coach Unai Emery after the team was reduced to 10 men with the sending off of Greek defender Sokratis Papastathopoulous in the 41st minute of the game.
With the Gunners reduced to 10-men before half time, the French team scored three un-replied goals to boost their confidence ahead of the return leg at the Emirates a week from now.
After the sending off, Nigerian international Alex Iwobi was sacrificed for a more defensive option in Matteo Guendouzi in the 52nd minute which former Arsenal defender and club legend Martin Keown said the manager got wrong.
He said; “There were several decisions for the manager to make and he got them all wrong. Aubameyang going off… He would have been perfect on the counter, Iwobi had more to offer before going off. Mkhitaryan playing at right back [after the red card]… he was completely opened up”
Other Arsenal fans also agreed with the club legend that sacrificing Iwobi who was the team’s most dangerous player backfired. @ArsenalReviewed on Twitter wrote. “Absolutely battered by a mid-table Ligue 1 side, could’ve easily been 6 or 7. Swapping Iwobi for Guendouzi was like losing another man, he was easily the best player on the pitch.”
Also reacting, @daramolamo on Twitter wrote; “Swapping Iwobi for Guendouzi was like losing another man”… one of the reasons why I can’t trust the future of this club to Unai Emery. At a time when we needed the industry of Iwobi and Creativity of Ozil, he pulls off ‘tactical’ subs.”
@ArsenalHomerton “The obvious substitution if one was gonna be made was to take off Ozil. He took our best player off who works hard all game. He took Auba off when in fact he should have had him running down the channels and holding the ball.”
The Gunners have everything to fight for in the second leg. Three Arsenal players have received red cards in their last five matches including Alexander Lacazette, Lucas Torreira, and Sokratis Papastathopoulous.