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Arteta says Arsenal lacked magic after Champions League exit

Arsenal are out of the Champions League after losing 1-0 at Bayern Munich in their quarter-final second leg.

Joshua Kimmich’s header was the difference on the night, and in the tie, as the German giants kept their season alive to progress to the last four. After relinquishing the Bundesliga title to Bayer Leverkusen at the weekend, Bayern bounced back to eliminate Arsenal at an atmospheric Allianz Arena.

 

Jamal Musiala forced David Raya into the best save of a tight first half, while Gabriel Martinelli missed Arsenal’s clearest opportunity at the other end. Martin Odegaard then had Manuel Neuer scrambling with another effort for the visitors.

Though the clash lacked the drama of the first leg in north London, the game opened up after the break and Leon Goretzka hit the woodwork for Bayern before Kimmich’s winner.

The 29-year-old made a late run into the box from right-back to connect with Raphael Guerreiro’s cross and thunder in a header.

“Very sad and disappointed with the final result. It was a tie of very small margins,” Arteta said at his post-match press conference.

“In the first leg we conceded two poor goals. Today we came here and I’m really proud of the players, especially in the first half. It was a game where you can see an error or individual brilliance would make the difference. We didn’t defend our box well enough.

“Credit to the opponent as well. It’s hard to break the opponents down when they play in the manner that they did. We struggled to keep that momentum in the second half. They’re never games with big big chances. Very rare.”

Arteta dismissed the suggestion that his side lacked belief at Bayern but admitted the pressure of a Champions League quarter-final was a new experience for Arsenal.

 

“I don’t know if it was about belief. The goal put them in a really good position. I saw the players. We lacked the magic to unlock the game and open that door. That’s why we are out.

“The club has been without Champions League football for seven years. The first time you want to be in it, then you want to be in the semi-finals and finals. We all want it so badly, but you see in many other clubs it takes six, seven years to get to that stage. But we were very close, that is the reality.”

Read – Kane wants Champions League trophy after ‘unbelievable’ Arsenal win

See more – Five transfer release clauses we expect to be triggered this summer

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