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09 Mar 2018

AC Milan 0-2 Arsenal: 5 things we learned

Fifteen years ago, Arsene Wenger watched his side pummel Inter Milan 5-1 at the San Siro.

It was a vital result, with Arsenal’s qualification from the Champions League Group Stage depending on a win. In the end, a team containing Pascal Cygan, Edu and Ray Parlour pulled them through to the next round.

Their 2-0 win on Thursday, however, feels more significant. Of course, Arsenal weren’t as fluent as they were on that frigid Milanese evening a decade ago, but they were comfortable and assertive against a side that had gone 13 games unbeaten.

Goals from Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Aaron Ramsey robbed Gianluigi Donnarumma of a seventh consecutive clean sheet, but statistics felt superfluous during an encounter where the intangibles ruled. Arsenal felt light and liberated, free from the manacles of their joyless domestic form.

In a game that harked back to brighter days, here are five things we learned.