Nobody needs to tell Arsenal fans twice: their backs are against the wall tonight in the UEFA Europa League. They go into their second leg tie against Rennes with a 3-1 deficit to contend with, and as you can probably work out, that’s a little bit more complicated than their tie against BATE Borisov. This is a much better team, a much more organised team, and seemingly a much more determined team. All of those attributes add up to problems for the Gunners, and when we say problems, we mean it.
One step at a time
With all of that being said, we have one very simple message for Arsenal tonight: just go out there and give it your all. If they crash out in an embarrassing performance, then that is the kind of thing that could impact the squad’s morale heading into the remainder of the Premier League campaign. If they put up a good fight and go down swinging, though, then that’ll at least earn the respect of fans who choose to believe they’re watching the club revert back to the European ways of Arsene Wenger.
We don’t have a crystal ball and we can’t tell you what is and isn’t going to happen in the game, but we’ve seen a lot of strange things go down in Europe this season already. It seems to be a ‘theme’ of sorts for sides to come from behind, or at the very least, to make things interesting. That’s what Arsenal need to do, because if they can win this, it’ll give them a whole load of confidence with the quarter finals on the horizon.
Just let loose
Emery’s first season has been pretty strong, but we shouldn’t be pretending like it won’t improve with a piece of silverware. It’s not a necessity by any stretch of the imagination, but we need to stop dwindling down our expectations. Arsenal are good enough to win the Europa League, and we shouldn’t be afraid of uttering those words out loud.
We’re excited for the game tonight and we’re intrigued to see what Rennes will bring to the table at the Emirates, but more so than anything else, we just want to see some passion. Passion is what makes football the beautiful game that it is, and anything less would be a huge disappointment.
Can Arsenal overcome the first leg loss and go through to the Europa League quarter finals?