As part of LastWordOnSports’ Euro 2016 coverage, we are covering Arsenal players’ performances in France. The ten Arsenal players seeking Euros glory are:
- France: Oliver Giroud, Laurent Koscielny
- Switzerland: Granit Xhaka
- England: Jack Wilshere
- Wales: Aaron Ramsey
- Germany: Mesut Özil
- Poland: Wojciech Szczesny
- Czech Republic: Petr Cech, Tomas Rosicky
- Spain: Hector Bellerin
ARSENAL AT EURO 2016:
Group A: Xhaka and Koscielny Face Off
Granit Xhaka and Laurent Koscielny faced off in a 0-0 draw between France and Switzerland. Koscielny proved to be a confident leader in defence, making several interceptions and blocks to earn the tournament hosts a clean sheet. Despite ripping two shirts, Xhaka showed the class and skill Arsenal fans will be fawning over with his passing accuracy and work rate over 90 minutes. Arsenal’s new man completed more passes (93) than Paul Pogba and Yohan Cabaye combined (87) and has completed the most passes in Switzerland’s three group games.
Meanwhile Oliver Giroud was an unused substitute against the Swiss although he made a lovely contribution after the game:
Arsenal new boy Xhaka went to introduce himself to new teammate Giroud tonight pic.twitter.com/9cLc5FsPI5
— ITV Football (@itvfootball) June 19, 2016
Group B: Ramsey Shows Off While Wilshere Struggles
With Wales and England both seeking wins to seal top spot, the final round of fixtures looked promising. Aaron Ramsey led the Welsh charge with the game’s first goal with a delightful dink before finding Gareth Bale in space to seal a convincing 3-0 win over Russia.
Jack Wilshere was among Roy Hodgson’s six changes against Slovakia but had a mixed game in England’s midfield. The 24 year old played some slick passes but was however guilty of being careless in possession before replaced by Wayne Rooney in the 56th minute. England’s 0-0 draw against Slovakia meant a second place for Hodgson’s men while Wales celebrate an unlikely top spot finish.
Group C: Mesut Özil Dominates Northern Ireland
In Germany’s final Group C game, Mesut Özil displayed an excellent performance in his side’s 1-0 win over Northern Ireland. Arsenal’s number 11 misplaced only one of his 68 passes, controlled Germany’s play and looked threatening in possession. A short highlight reel of his performance can be seen here:
— HM (@hmafc) June 21, 2016
Wojciech Sczcesny was absent from Poland’s 1-0 victory over Ukraine due to a quite nasty looking thigh injury.
Group D: Cech and Rosicky Say Farewell
Petr Cech’s Czech Republic was sent packing their bags after Turkey won 2-0, ensuring they finished bottom of Group D. He was unable to stop goals from Burak Yilmaz and Ozan Tufan with the latter disappointingly beating him at his near post. Meanwhile Tomas Rosicky was unavailable after a thigh injury ruled him out of the rest of the tournament. With both players in their mid thirties, Euro 2016 could be their last international tournament.
Hector Bellerin was an unused Spanish substitute in a 2-1 loss against Croatia, causing his country to finish second in Group D.