I have to say that the Gunners looked like they took their foot of the accelerator most of the second half. In total they possessed the ball just 47% of the time, a statistic that is unlike them. Fabregas did not look sharp and Song looked lackadaisical. The team was missing its characteristic fluid passing style. There were moments of uncertainty with Mannone and the defenders.
On the other hand AZ Alkmaar really pushed up field trying hard to draw level with Cesc Fabregas 36th minute goal and succeeded in keeping away the ball away from Arsenal fro long periods of time. The Fabregas goal came from a mistake made by Nicklas Moisander who gave the ball away to Arshavin. Quick as a flash, the Russian shifted gears finding RVP bypassing him on the left. The Dutchman unselfishly gave up the ball crossing from the left for the arriving Fabregas left with the simple job of tapping the ball home.
The equalizer came in the 93rd minute as the Arsenal defense failed to pick up Graziano Pelle who headed down from a free kick and midfielder David Mendes da Silva volleyed the ball over Mannone. Again, its a pattern noticeable against Birmingham too, these crucial lapses in concentration. There seems to be a unawareness that every minute of the match needs to be played. AZ only got one clear chance at goal but it was enough.
Arsenal retain the lead on top of group H with 7 points, Olympiakos has 6, AZ has 2, and Standard Liege 1. These two team meet up again on November 4th at the Emirates.