Gunners held by Fener
Arsenal remain top of Champions League Group G despite being held to a goalless draw by Fenerbahce.
Last Updated: 05/11/08 10:06pm
Arsenal remain top of Champions League Group G despite being held to a goalless draw by Fenerbahce at the Emirates.
The Gunners started brightly enough but failed to capitalise on a quick start with Robin Van Persie failing to convert a hat-trick of close-range efforts.
The closest Arsenal came to breaking the deadlock arrived in the first half when Volkan Demirel pulled off a fine save to parry Van Persie's shot onto the crossbar.
Arsene Wenger's side huffed and puffed after the interval but failed to create any chances of note as Fenerbahce collected just their second Group G point.
Fenerbahce picked Roberto Carlos at left-back and the Brazilian endured a nervy start that almost set up the opener for Van Persie.
The former Real Madrid star's tame clearance landed straight at the feet of Aaron Ramsey who played a square ball to the unmarked Cesc Fabregas.
The Spaniard lofted a sweet pass into the box and Van Persie timed his run to perfection only to see his prodded shot slip inches wide of the right post.
Ramsey, making his first start in the group stage of the Champions League, was showing no sign of nerves as he eased into the box only to find the arms of Volkan.
Samir Nasri - another summer arrival at the Emirates Stadium - showed less composure as he flailed at a deflected cross by Van Persie.
It was then the Dutchman who let another chance go begging, drilling the ball into the ground and over the crossbar after Volkan got fingertips to a Fabregas lob.
Arsenal showed far greater invention in attack but still had nothing to show for their obvious superiority. Kolo Toure, playing at right-back, created space for Van Persie who brilliantly turned Diego Lugano inside-out before seeing his shot from point-blank range pushed onto the crossbar by Volkan.
Nasri drew a good save from the Turkey goalkeeper as the first half remained goalless.
A swift counter-attack by Fenerbahce shortly after the interval saw Fabianski come to the rescue by nudging Ugur Boral's low strike wide of the right post.
The ineffective Nicklas Bendtner and impressive Ramsey were replaced by Carlos Vela and Abou Diaby with half an hour to go and they watched as Van Persie nodded a superb opportunity over the crossbar.
Chances were arriving less frequently as Arsenal began to run out of ideas, their play frustrated by a Fenerbahce rearguard that knew it had successfully dealt with their opponents' best efforts.Defender Mikael Silvestre went off clutching his nose with five minutes to go and the Gunners failed to mount another meaningful attack.
|0||1st Half Goals||0|
|4||Shots on Target||2|
|7||Shots off Target||4|