Koscielny a symbol of all that’s wrong with Gunners

Five things we learned

Koscielny a symbol of all that’s wrong with Gunners

Laurent Koscielny should be a world-class player, but in fact he is part of the problem

Arsenal’s French captain has become one of the most frustrating players in the Premier League. He has all the attributes to be a world-class defender and in some games he shows it.

How often, though, has he made mistakes, such as the one he made here to gift

Atletico Madrid an equaliser?

With Arsenal totally in charge and 1-0 up he was left one-on-one with Antoine Griezmann after holding an unnecessarily high line and then fluffed his challenge to allow the striker to score. It was like déjà vu.

How many times has the same player done the same thing before? At least this time he didn’t slip, that was left to Shkodran Mustafi, as he tried to keep out Griezmann’s shot on the line.

It was defensive suicide.

By contrast Diego Simeone’s team defended with superb discipline, organisation and organisational skill after going down to 10 men so early in the game. Arsenal could learn a lot from them.

Alexandre Lacazette is the real deal — and why did we ever doubt him?

So often people are quick to judge a player when he makes a slow start to a new career in a new country and Lacazette suffered exactly that fate after scoring only eight times in his first 29 matches in Arsenal red after signing from Lyon, but the €60m striker really is finding his feet now despite his team’s difficult season.

His goal here, an excellent header from a prodigious leap, was his 16th in 36 games, which is a better start than even Thierry Henry made with the Gunners.

It just goes to show a little bit of patience goes a long way when a player has to make cultural adjustments to living and working in a new country. Lacazette is a real finisher and is still only 26 years old, so the evidence now points to a bright future in north London.

Arsene Wenger’s imminent departure has released the pressure valve inside the Emirates

The knowledge that Wenger is on his way out has finally allowed Arsenal fans to increase the noise levels inside the Emirates and get behind their team.

It can’t, of course, erase the weaknesses in the team they support — as demonstrated by Atletico’s heartbreaking equaliser — but it has at least changed the atmosphere around them and allowed supporters to express themselves.

The atmosphere against Atletico was loud and positive and the players responded. It’s hard to remember the Emirates louder in recent times. Thankfully for the club, the empty seasons were gone too and Wenger’s final home game, against Burnley on May 6th, will be a sell out.

Giving the Europa League winners a place in the Champions League has transformed the competition

Whoever came up with the genius idea to give the Europa League winners a guaranteed spot in the Champions League the following season deserves huge credit, because it has transformed the entire atmosphere around the competition.

It’s easy to forget the Europa was once derided by English fans — summed up by the chant ‘Thursday nights, Channel 5’ — and the fact that teams are ‘relegated’ into it from the Champions League was always an issue.

Some clubs even used it, in similar fashion to the League Cup, to field younger players, but since its revamp, and since Jose Mourinho took it so seriously last year to ensure Manchester United regained their place in the Champions League, the attitude is totally different. Finally, UEFA have got something right.

If you were a combustible player you’ll probably never calm down completely

Diego Simeone had a reputation as an aggressive and emotional player. He once described his style of play as like "holding a knife between his teeth".

Everyone remembers that tackle on David Beckham at the 1998 World Cup, which led to Beckham being sent off for tripping him in retaliation. So, seeing him sent off at the Emirates shouldn’t have been a big surprise.

The Argentine completely lost his composure, and his temper, after seeing Sime Vrsaljko sent off.

Don’t forget Simeone was also shown red in the Champions League Final of 2014 against Real Madrid for twice running onto the pitch to confront the referee. Some things, it seems, you never grow out of.

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