Arsenal endured a shock 0-1 loss away from home against Belarusian side BATE Borisov in their round of 32 fixture in the Europa League last week. However, they will have the chance to overturn the lead and get a result in their favour when the two sides meet once again at the Emirates Stadium for the return leg in a midweek clash.
The Gunners were sloppy all over the pitch. Their build-up play was slow and scrappy and lacked any coherence. They missed the creative spark in the final third and fell flat in their attempts to dominate proceedings against an inferior opponent.
Unai Emery will be looking forward to his players to make a comeback in the tie and win the second leg. Here are three players who will need to step up to get their sides into the next round in this do or die encounter.
Arsenal are expected to go in full strength for this crucial clash and Koscielny should start in the heart of the backline for the Gunners. The Frenchman’s presence will not only provide a lot of stability in defence but it will also give Arsenal an extra edge during set-pieces.
The Arsenal skipper has come back strongly this season after missing a chunk of the action due to an injury crisis. Despite his age and injury troubles, he still looks the best option in defence at the moment and will have to be on the top of his game on Thursday if the Gunners are to avoid a huge upset.
The Swiss midfielder is not having the best of seasons and will need to put up a good show if his side is to come out victorious against BATE. Emery has kept his faith in the defensive midfielder throughout the Europa League campaign and it is time for Xhaka to prove him right.
In the absence of Alexandre Lacazette, who received a red card for his hot-headedness in the first leg against BATE, the onus will be on the Gabon international to get the goals for his side. Though he had started out strongly, the player has lost his scoring touch in recent times. He will surely look to make this opportunity count and help his side get over the line against BATE with a few goals on the night.