The viaduct collapses

What to say about Arsenal de Sarandí’s pathetic performance in the Maracana on Wednesday night? They were visiting a Brazilian giant of a club, but for all the money Fluminense have spent on forwards this year, they’ve not been in the Copa Libertadores for a couple of decades, and Arsenal have just won the Sudamericana, on the back of some superb away performances. This one was far from that, as Fluminense tore them to pieces, 6-0.

Arsenal were being realistic about their expectations prior to the match. Anibal Matellán claimed that ‘losing wouldn’t be a catastrophe,’ whilst manager Gustavo Alfaro spoke of the importance of not conceding any silly free kicks around the box – Flu have set-piece specialist Thiago Neves in their ranks.

Fifteen minutes in, Arsenal went and did precisely that, though, and Neves punished them with a brilliant free kick. Flu’s teenage striking sensation Dodó made it two with a fine volley, but Arsenal eventually managed their first shot on goal in the 43rd minute of the first half. The goalkeeper gathered Matellán’s attempt, and set Flu off on a counter-attack which ended with the third goal, Dodó brilliantly setting up Gabriel.

In the second half, Dodó made it two for himself and four for his team with a tremendous volley, before setting up Washington for a fifth later on. The sixth arrived late on from Cicero. Fluminense now top Group 8, whereas Arsenal are just a point behind but have a goal difference of -5. The return will be interesting…

Check back later on for the goals, if Arsenal fans can bear to watch them…

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