Arsenal Vs Rennes: Europa Cup At 9pm - European Football (EPL, UEFA, La Liga)
Arsenal last hope of Silver ware hangs on thread, after loosing scandalously 3-1 against Rennes. Arsenal as usual was poor in every department of the game.
Unai Emery has some big decisions to make on Thursday night as he look to plot a way for Arsenal to overturn a two-goal deficit against Rennes and book their spot in the Europa League quarter-finals.
The Gunners slumped to a disappointing 3-1 defeat in France last week and will be without Sokratis for the return game at the Emirates due to the red card the Greek centre-back received at Roazhon Park.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan is available again, however, after missing out with a back problem against Manchester United at the weekend and Alexandre Lacazette is also able to feature after UEFA reduced his suspension, which originally had ruled him out of the game.
So Emery must decide how to set his team up, knowing that they need goals but also that it’s important not to leave themselves exposed at the other end, especially with the pace Rennes possess on the counter attack.
Speaking ahead of the game, Arsenal’s head coach said: “I want to play the best possible match, doing all we can, with each player and the team," said Emery.
"In the first 90 minutes, they beat us and on Thursday we will want to show here it can be different.
"We need all the players with the focus and to control our emotions and control the different situations and scenarios that can come in the 90 minutes."
Arsenal fans have been voting for the starting XI they would like to see Emery go for during the past 24 hours on football.london and the results are certainly interesting.
The most popular lineup as voted for by supporters includes Denis Suarez, who has yet to make his first start for the Gunners following his January loan move from Barcelona.
Suarez is preferred to Alex Iwobi on the left side of a midfield diamond, which is anchored by Granit Xhaka, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan on the right and Mesut Ozil at the tip.
Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are then paired together in attack.
In defence, the most popular XI sees Sead Kolasinac preferred to Nacho Monreal at left-back, with Shkodran Mustafi, Laurent Koscielny and Ainsley Maitland-Niles completing the back four.
Petr Cech has been Arsenal’s goalkeeper throughout the competition, but fans want to see Bernd Leno start against Rennes on Thursday night.
Most popular Arsenal starting XI vs Rennes as voted by fans: Leno, Maitland-Niles, Koscielny, Mustafi, Kolasinac, Xhaka, Mkhitaryan, Suarez, Ozil, Lacazette, Aubameyang.