Arsenal 2, Paris Saint-Germain 2: Arsene Wenger frustrated but refuses to blame Alex Iwobi for costly late own goal

 
Frank Dalleres
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Iwobi (centre) diverted a Lucas header past his own goalkeeper for PSG's equaliser (Source: Getty)

Arsenal 2, Paris Saint-Germain 2

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger admitted his frustration but refused to blame Alex Iwobi after his late own goal cost the Gunners a valuable victory and, in all likelihood, top spot in Champions League Group A.

Wenger's men fought back from Edinson Cavani's early goal to lead the French title-holders through Olivier Giroud's penalty and a Marco Verratti own goal before youngster Iwobi's unfortunate intervention.

Arsenal were already assured of a place in the last 16 but must now outperform PSG in the final group games if they are to avoid qualifying in second place - and receiving a more dangerous draw - for a fifth successive year.

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"It can happen. The frustrating thing is I think [goalkeeper David] Ospina was behind him," Wenger said of Iwobi's own goal.

"He's certainly the most disappointed by what happened to him. That's part of the game: we have to take that on the chin, support him, and go back into the next game.

"When you're 2-1 up and score an own goal you're entitled to think you could have won the game. Overall it's maybe a fair result.

"We have not lost but we have lost winning momentum a little bit, yes. But we played against a good team tonight as well.

"Sometimes you go through a spell when you win a bit less. It's down to us to continue without losing a game but also to transform the draws now into wins. But there is no reason to panic."

PSG had the better of the 1-1 draw between these teams in September and started better here, Cavani almost converting Thomas Meunier's cross and then Kieran Gibbs being forced to hook off the line from a corner.

A goal was coming, however, and on 18 minutes Cavani made no mistake when sliding in at the far post to meet Blaise Matuidi's cross-shot. It was the in-form Uruguayan's 21st goal in 21 games this season.

An Arsenal comeback looked unlikely until Giroud tackled Grzegorz Krychowiak, Mesut Ozil fed Alexis Sanchez with a reverse ball and the Chile forward tumbled under the sliding challenge of the PSG midfielder.

Tempers rose and Cavani scuffled with Aaron Ramsey. Giroud, making only his second start of the season, kept his cool to send Alphonse Areola the wrong way - his fifth goal in five games - and put the Gunners level just before the break.

Lucas clipped the crossbar with a free-kick after half-time, but the hosts looked revitalised and took the lead on 59 minutes when Marquinhos's attempt to clear a Ramsey shot ricocheted off Verratti and into his own net.

PSG redoubled their efforts and were rewarded fourteen minutes from time when Iwobi glanced Lucas's header past David Ospina. Cavani could have won it but headed narrowly wide and scuffed an attempted chip when through.

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