Arsenal almost secured their place in the Europa League quarter-finals despite a 1-0 loss to Olympiacos on Thursday night, with Mikel Arteta’s men edging out the draw 3-2 on aggregate.
Youssef El-Arabi’s strike in the second period gave the Gunners something to think about as the aggregate scores were reduced to 3-2. The Moroccan cut inside before breaking his effort past Bernd Leno and in the bottom corner.
Olympiacos’ comeback was halted late as they were reduced to ten men, with Ousseynou Ba receiving a second yellow card after a hand to Gabriel Martinelli as the Gunners saw the overall victory 3-2.
Now on to the Arsenal players’ notes …
Bernd Leno (GK) – 6/10 – He couldn’t do much about the Olympiacos opening and showed good handling throughout.
Hector Bellerin (RB) – 6/10 – Used his pace well when he found himself isolated in the large areas. A solid if not spectacular display.
David Luiz (CB) – 6/10 – Another pretty decent display from a man who scores a 10/10 in our eyes whenever he doesn’t do something absolutely ridiculous.
Gabriel (CB) – 7/10 – Once again, Arsenal’s defense core remained steady. A monster in the air and was the key to keeping visitors at bay late.
Kieran Tierney (LB) – 7/10 – Provided an exit to the left side which was essential as Arsenal looked to alleviate some of the pressure the visitors were cramming late on.
Dani Ceballos (CM) – 5/10 – Given his luck in the starting XI, but failed to grab it and was hooked in the second half.
Granite Xhaka (CM) – 7/10 – A solid display from a man who needs to keep his head down for a few weeks. I kept things going and made a number of interceptions.
Mohamed Elneny (AM) – 7/10 – Constantly seeking to take the ball, he found himself diving deeper in an effort to have an impact on the procedure. A good display in the heart of the midfield.
Nicolas Pepe (RW) – 5/10 – Some sadly end a night when an Arsenal goal would have made things so much easier for Arteta’s side.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (ST) – 5/10 – Restored to Arsenal’s starting XI after his split from Arteta. Didn’t quite mark his comeback with a good performance and seemed frustrated much of the night.
Emile Smith Rowe (LW) – 7/10 – Carried the threat on the visitors and seemed the most likely to do something whenever the Gunners were in the Olympiacos half.
Thomas Partey (CM) – 6/10
Martin Odegaard (CM) – 6/10
Gabriel Martinelli (LW) – N / A
Calum Rooms (CB) – N / A