Munich: Oliver Giroud's 3rd minute strike helped Arsenal take a 1-0 lead at half-time over Bayern Munich in the second leg of round of 16, Champions League fixture at the Allianz Arena here on Wednesday night. Arsenal though still trail the German side 3-2 on aggregate after Bayern had won the first leg 3-1.
Without the injured Jack Wilshere, Bacary Sagna and Lukas Podolski, Aresnal had their task cut out to overturn the huge deficit and they had a perfect start with French international Giroud getting the early goal. Olivier Giroud scored his 15th goal of the season in the 3rd minute as the striker received a Theo Walcott vicious right-wing cross to slot the ball into the roof of the net to stun the home side.
Arsenal enjoyed possession early in the match and in the 18th minute, Tomas Rosicky earned his side a free-kick on halfway as Arsenal happily kept possession at the back in the early stages of the game. Bayern were able to execute a few attacks as well with Arjen Robben playing the ball wide for Javi Martinez, but his shot went over the crossbar in the 25th minute. In the 26th, Philipp Lahm picked out Toni Kroos on the edge of the area, but he stubbed the ball into the ground allowing Arsenal keeper Lukasz Fabianski to make a comfortable save.
As the game progressed, both the teams went on the offensive with Robben troubling the Gunners' defence couple of times with his pace. In the 29th minute, the Dutch international broke away to get past Carl Jenkinson, but the Gunners' full-back did superbly to shepherd him off the ball before clearing his lines. Robben was at it again gliding past Theo Walcott this time before thumping his left-foot shot wide of the far post.
In the 34th minute, Santi Cazorla found Walcott in space down the right delivering a wonderful cross which Giroud was unable to get onto.