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UCL Rewind: Monaco holds off Arsenal, Atletico tops Leverkusen in penalties

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By AARON CRANFORD

With a 2-0 win, Arsenal may have won the battle on Tuesday, but they did not win the war as AS Monaco advances to the quarterfinals of the UEFA Champions League on away goals after drawing 3-3 on aggregate.

Meanwhile, Atletico Madrid needed penalty kicks in order to make it to the second round of the knockout stage. The runner-up in last year’s competition leveled the score on aggregate, 1-1, in the 27th minute after a deflected shot from Mario Suarez found its way over the line. And they finished more of their penalty kicks, 3-2, to send them through to the final eight over Bayer Leverkusen.

The German club entered Tuesday’s affair up a goal, but Suarez helped extend Madrid’s chances of advancing with an equalizer in the 27th minute. Suarez banged in Madrid’s first shot with a left footed attempt from just at the edge of the box. It deflected off of Omer Toprak before heading into the net.

When the Bundesliga and La Liga sides headed to penalties, both had trouble finding the net as five of their 10 attempts were missed or saved. But the Spanish side advanced in penalty kicks by night’s end.

Over in France, Arsenal headed into Tuesday needing three goals or more against Monaco, but they could only muster two across the line, giving the French side a ticket to advance to the quarterfinals of the UCL for the first time since the 2003-2004 competition.

After Danny Welbeck slotted a pass through the defensive line, Olivier Giroud gave the Gunners the lead in the 36th minute. His initial shot was saved by Danijel Subasic, but the ball bounced to the Arsenal forward’s feet, and he subsequently blasted his second attempt into the roof of the net.

With Monaco sitting back and absorbing wave after wave of attack, Arsenal continued to create one opportunity after the next. And they broke through yet again in the 79th minute when substitute Aaron Ramsey fired in Arsenal’s second after Theo Walcott’s initial attempt bounced back into play off of the post.

With time running out and Arsenal needing only one more goal, the Gunners sent everyone into Monaco’s attacking half, but the French side held on to advance on away goals.

Madrid and Monaco, both nicknamed The Red and Whites, will await the quarterfinal draw to be held on March 20 in order to find out their next opponents.

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What do you think of these results? How do you think Monaco and Madrid will fare in the next round? Disappointed to see Arsenal and Bayer Leverkusen ousted?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. La Liga teams march on and continue to dominate European football.

    Premier league teams, not so much…

    Delighted about bot Monaco and Atleti. Now, its Barcelona and Dortmund’s turn.

    Reply

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