Wenger hails 'faultless' display from Fabianski

The howl of triumph emitted by Lukasz Fabianski after saving Cleo's second penalty in Belgrade last night revealed the anguish he has suffered in the Arsenal goal.

Fabianski's last Champions League outing was an error-strewn defeat in Porto last season but against Partizan, said Arsène Wenger, he showed the "real Fabianski".

"We have seen today the Lukasz Fabianski we see in training every day," said the Arsenal manager. "He had a faultless game. I know it is in him and he got it out in the game tonight. Hopefully that will give him the needed belief and confidence.

"I was always confident he will come out as a great goalkeeper. We have to keep confidence in him and he will gain experience with games like that."

Wenger added he did not know if Manuel Almunia, who was absent last night with an elbow injury, would be fit to play at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. "We will see how the injury goes. It is too early to say," he said.

Fabianski was hugged at the final whistle by his team-mates, one of whom, Jack Wilshere, said: "Our keepers have been under a lot of pressure, but Lukasz made a great save at the end."

That was one of three penalties, two of them missed. But although Arshavin missed Arsenal's penalty, Partizan coach Alexandar Stanojevic said it was the "the turning point" because his centre-half Marko Jovanovic was dismissed in the incident after a tangle with Chamakh. "It is difficult to play against Arsenal with 11 men," said Stanojevic, "with 10 it is nearly impossible. Arsenal are a better team with better players." Television replays suggested Chamakh may have dived. Stanojevic limited himself to saying: "The penalty was maybe a bit severe and so was the sending off."

The match was in doubt prior to kick-off after a series of power cuts knocked out one of the floodlights. Wenger said he had urged Uefa to play if at all possible. "It would be terrible to go home and not play, so I encouraged Uefa that we wanted to play even if one corner [floodlight] was off. Overall it was acceptable."

Of the game Wenger added: "Partizan gave us the game we expected – full of commitment, full of power on every break. We had a lot of the ball and created a lot of chances. However, we could not kill the game off. They came back with the penalty and then we were always under threat. After that we needed to keep the pace high and, when we got the second goal, I thought we looked comfortable."

Wilshere added: "We knew it was going to be tough but we deserved the win." Wilshere was withdrawn midway through the second period. "He got a few knocks and I decided to be cautious with him," said Wenger.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness