Arsenal 2-2 Barcelona
UEFA Champions League
31 March 2010
Barcelona absolutely dominated the first half with almost all the possession and chances. Arsenal were on their heels from the start and only had one or two decent chances in the first 45 minutes. If not for some terrific saves from Almunia, Barcelona would have led by a few goals. Despite getting the chances, it would remain 0-0 at halftime.
The second half would see four goals and Arsenal would slowly come to life. Barcelona would take the lead early as Ibrahimovic scored on a lob shot over Almunia, who was off his line and out of position, to make it 1-0 in the 46th minute. Ibrahimovic would score the second goal for in the 59th minute as he had another chance inside the box and scored on a shot just under the crossbar.
Arsenal would get more possession and chances in the second half. One of the key was the introduction of Theo Walcott on the right wing. His speed immediately made a difference as he would score in the 69th minute after receiving a pass from Nicklas Bendtner. The Gunners would add one more in the 85th minute as Cesc Fabregas converted a penalty kick. He was fouled by Carlos Puyol, who received a red card, while trying to take a shot inside the box.
Because of Puyol’s red card and Pique picking up a yellow, Barcelona will be without both starting central defenders for the second leg. Fabregas will miss the second leg for Arsenal because of picking up a yellow card in the first half.