1 Arsenal go toe-to-toe and conjure up a famous result

Rarely has an Arsenal triumph tasted so sweet for their supporters. The north London club are back from the brink and if there were individual heroes, not least Petr Cech and the defensive players in front of him – the efforts of Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny to suppress the previously irrepressible Robert Lewandowski were a sight to behold – the overall impression was of a club showing their mettle. Bayern Munich had arrived in seemingly invincible touch and with Arsène Wenger describing them as the best team in Europe. The visitors looked good for long spells but they could not breach an Arsenal side who, as Pep Guardiola had predicted, fought like animals. But this was no mere rearguard triumph. Arsenal went toe-to-toe with Bayern; they created (and missed) chances before they bent the result to the sheer force of their will. A 16th consecutive qualification for the Champions League last 16 is back on.

2 Costa and Thiago enjoy a skill-off

In what was a gripping and often thrilling encounter, two Bayern players appeared to be engaged in their own private duel. Would Douglas Costa or Thiago Alcântara out-skill the other to win the super-fly player of the night award? Costa, the winger, took the brinkmanship to another level in the first half with two quite dazzling moves to flummox Héctor Bellerín. The Arsenal full-back was not the only one inside the stadium who wondered what had happened and how. Costa was a slippery menace and on a couple of other occasions he fizzed shots narrowly off target. Thiago’s moves were smoother but the midfielder’s balance and awareness were as much a feature of the evening. He was central to Bayern’s possession game, which at times felt strangely mesmeric while his quick feet got him out of tight spots with ridiculous ease.

3 Cech makes belated Arsenal debut in Europe

When Petr Cech signed for Arsenal from Chelsea over the summer, in what was the club’s only major signing, the goalkeeper might reasonably have expected to have tasted Champions League action by the middle of October. Not so. Wenger had preferred David Ospina against both Dinamo Zagreb and Olympiakos – and to disastrous effect in the second game. Ospina will be haunted by his own goal handling blunder for some time. Ospina was ruled out here with a shoulder injury, which allowed Wenger to restore Cech without any loss of face, and there were several flickers that both manager and player could enjoy. Cech made a big block from Thiago in the 11th minute and another diving save from Arturo Vidal later in the first half. His handling was true throughout and in the second half, he twice stood tall to deny Robert Lewandowski.

4 Neuer veers from the sublime to the ridiculous

Theo Walcott had to do better. From such a distance, completely unmarked, in a central position and in such a big game, the very best finishers do not give goalkeepers a save to make. What Manuel Neuer did next, however, sent jaws dropping to the floor and fingers across the continent reaching for expression in 140 characters or less. Not only did Neuer read Walcott’s intentions to get across his line but he had the strength in one of those mighty paws to bat the header clear. At that point, the eulogies about the world’s best goalkeeper were being penned. And yet Neuer would finish as a villain, courtesy of the rush of blood that saw him leap and flap at Santi Cazorla’s late free‑kick, from which the substitute, Oliver Giroud, scrambled home his goal. Neuer appeared to be distracted by Laurent Koscielny and Thomas Müller in front of him. He had no excuses.

5 Fans show solidarity over ticket prices

A sizeable chunk of the visiting enclosure had been empty at kick-off time, as Bayern’s fans voted with their feet and boycotted the opening minutes. They had wanted to express their anger at having been charged £64 per ticket and, when they began to filter into the stadium after six minutes, their counterparts in the Arsenal seats stood to applaud them. The home fans have long been unhappy at the monies they must find to watch their team live at the Emirates and it was lost on nobody that for the price of two tickets to this game you could afford the cheapest season tickets at Bayern. Once all of the Bayern fans were inside, they ratcheted up the volume while the Arsenal crowd were also full square behind their team. They had got the evening under way by raising red and white cards to create a mural around the ground.

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