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Friday, 19 April 2019

Europa League: the notes of Naples-Arsenal

Arsenal are playing their European future tonight when they travel to Naples as part of the Europa League return quarter-final. The Italians, second in Serie A, are well off to play the Champions League next year unlike the Gunners in full battle with Manchester United, Tottenham and Chelsea. While the winner of the Europa League is directly qualified for the C1, Arsenal should not miss such a chance.

He was, like all his team, completely missed out on his first leg. This Thursday, we saw more applied in what he undertook, more voluntary. As on a nice overflow where he found Fabian Ruiz in the surface, without success (47th). But always with the nervousness that awaited him. We also remember him from this image, standing next to the bench after his replacement, refusing to sit like his other teammates. Throughout the game, his annoyance was palpable, as evidenced by his yellow card collected just before the break for clearing the ball in protest at an arbitral decision (44). So best, but not sure that this is enough to reassure skeptics on the side of Napoli.

This season, Arsenal is in the company of teams of his standing, unlike last year when the Londoners had crossed the line with Atlético Madrid, ending so dream a trophy and a qualification for the C1.Emmené by Unaï Emery, a specialist in the Europa League since he won three editions, Arsenal must defend a two-goal advantage on the side of San Paolo. So to avoid a scary end of the season in the Premier League and to afford a little comfort with a trophy, Arsenal has no right to the error.

This match has almost perfectly transcribed all the paradox of the Gabonese. Full of desire, he knows how to create opportunities, especially by his speed. But it's too much, too much. We would have expected the best scorer of Arsenal this season, with 23 achievements in total, he kills any suspense on this caviar Mkhitaryan. But he stumbled on Meret, a few meters from the goal only (48th). Bis repetita a few minutes later on corner (58th). Also, in the game, the contrast with Lacazette was shouting, the French much more technically right. To make matters worse, already, early in the game, when he lost the ball on corner, Aubam 'was a great opportunity in Naples, fortunately, Cech watched (17th). In this configuration, especially after the goal, where Arsenal applied to block the space and quickly go against it, he was never able to exploit the shots. Insufficient.