Welcome to the Arsenal players as they left their dressing room in the Allianz Arena in the immediate aftermath of their humiliating 5-1 defeat on Wednesday night.
The purpose-built ‘mixed zone’ in Munich’s impressive 12-year-old home is bigger than most and lends itself to people watching if not actually eliciting any comment from Arsenal’s defeated players.
It is split into two legs – home team and away – and an excited German press clamoured around a steady stream of Bayern Munich players as they emerged, interrupted only briefly by the unexpected appearance of Theo Walcott, who had taken a wrong turning.
Arsenal players were quick to move on from questioning after the game
Alexis Sanchez's body language after the game spoke a thousand words
A huddle of cameras hung around the Arsenal line more in hope than expectation along with a small posse of English newspapermen.
Nobody spoke after Arsenal beat Ludogorets 6-0, so what chance was there here?
First out was substitute goalkeeper Petr Cech, shrugging those giant shoulders and smiling awkwardly.
He knew he should have been playing in Arsenal’s biggest game of the season but as a result of sitting on the bench, he had nothing to talk about.
Can you guess the last Arsenal team to win a Champions League knockout tie?
Thu, February 16, 2017
Arsenal last won a Champions League knockout tie against FC Porto back in 2010, but can you name the players in that victorious side?
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Can you name the last Arsenal team to win a Champions League knockout tie?
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who had been left alone on the pitch to acknowledge the travelling support, still looked in a bemused and bewildered daze as he wandered past, ear plugs firmly implanted, disbelieving scowl upon his face.
David Ospina spoke a few words to the rights-holders in what seemed a UEFA box-ticking exercise. But nobody, it seems, felt they should be the ones to front up properly.
Not even Laurent Koscielny once he had confirmed his injury did not appear a serious one. “Any chance of an interview?” I asked. “As the captain?” His eyes flicked up briefly but he did not break stride. Subsequently, his “grilling” by the club’s own website appeared online when he was asked about it being a painful night, how things had gone wrong following his substitution and, most mind-numbing of all, whether the tie was over.
Even Alexis Sanchez, whose reaction on the pitch spoke such volumes after the fifth goal, marched resolutely on.
The implication of him sitting on his haunches in disgust is understood to have upset a few players in the immediate aftermath in the inevitable session of finger-pointing that follows any heavy defeat. Nobody likes it when one player tries to extricate himself from the inevitable backlash.
But generally the mood was despondency and not anger. That is worrying and the very reason why questions need to be asked.