November 24, 2016 10:58:08 am
Paris St Germain striker Edinson Cavani wasted enough chances to win four football matches in his side’s two Champions League clashes against Arsenal but remained upbeat after a 2-2 draw on Wednesday put his side in pole position in Group A.
“It’s a good result, but we deserved to win,” the Uruguayan told reporters. “We did more than Arsenal and had better chances. Arsenal are a great side and it’s good to perform like that against such teams.
“Today we passed a test against a great team.”
Cavani, who grabbed a goal a minute into the 1-1 draw with Arsenal in Paris in September but squandered many other chances, opened the scoring at the Emirates after 18 minutes when he converted Blaise Matuidi’s cross.
Arsenal went ahead through Olivier Giroud’s penalty and Marco Verratti’s own goal before Lucas’s header was deflected in by Alex Iwobi to give PSG the point that means they will finish top providing they beat Ludogorets in the final game.
Cavani was perhaps lucky to escape punishment for an altercation with Aaron Ramsey before Giroud’s penalty. He ran Arsenal’s backline ragged at times, though, wasting a one-on-one opportunity shortly after his side’s equaliser and heading wide with the goal gaping late on.
“It’s good to improve and grow as a team, and we’ll grow even more,” said Cavani, who has netted 16 goals this season.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger accepted that PSG, third in Ligue 1, had more chances and was disappointed his side backed off once they had been given a fortunate lead.
Victory would have guaranteed his team won their group for the first time since 2011. They had already reached the last 16 for the 17th successive season but are likely to enter the draw as runners-up, potentially pitting them against Barcelona or Real Madrid when the competition resumes next year.
“We gave a lot tonight and we came back from 1-0 down to lead 2-1 and then gave away an own goal,” Wenger said.
“It’s difficult to understand how easy we gave away a goal at a corner. But we played a good side. We had good spells in the game but we could not dominate. Tonight my concern is that we were 2-1 up and allowed them to come back at us.
“I think it came down to physicality because when we were leading 2-1 we were trying to hold the scoreline and we hurt ourselves. Maybe it’s a fair result.”
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