Monaco heap more Champions League agony on Arsenal

Wed Feb 25, 2015 6:28pm EST
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By Mike Collett

LONDON (Reuters) - AS Monaco gave Arsenal a lesson in patient, counter-attacking football to win their Champions League last 16 first leg-match 3-1 in London on Wednesday, heaping more European agony on Arsene Wenger.

Arsenal boss Wenger, a former manager at Monaco, is now facing elimination at this stage of the competition for the fifth straight season after the shattering home defeat.

French midfielder Geoffrey Kondogbia put the visitors ahead after 38 minutes, when he crashed in a long range shot that took a deflection off Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker, leaving goalkeeper David Ospina helpless.

Bulgarian veteran Dimitar Berbatov, continually jeered by the home fans because of his past links with their arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur, added the second after 53 minutes after a devastating Monaco counter-attack.

Arsenal pulled one back in stoppage time when substitute Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain curled home from the edge of the area, but Monaco scored even later to restore their two-goal advantage when substitute Yannick Ferreira-Carrasco scored with a shot that went in off the post.

Arsenal wasted several chances with Olivier Giroud spurning four scoring opportunities to leave Arsenal with a mountain to climb when Wenger takes his side back to the principality for the second leg on March 17.

ROCK SOLID   Continued...

Football - Arsenal v AS Monaco - UEFA Champions League Second Round First Leg - Emirates Stadium, London, England - 25/2/15
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger looks dejected
Reuters / Eddie Keogh