Arsenal will face Valencia at Emirates Stadium, in London, in the Europa League Semi-Finals first leg. Arsenal against Valencia is always the match with big interest, especially during this season. Both strong and talented squads will play for Final of second biggest European Tournament. Review our thoughts on this match here below.
Arsenal looks unconfident in the last matches of PL. They lost 3 last games and moved to 5th place in Standings. In general, Arsenal lost 4 out of the last 5 games in Premier League and looks like they are facing big troubles fighting for a place In Champions league. Now they have 66 points, 1 point more than Manchester United and 2 points away from Chelsea, who could be their rival in UEFA Europa League Final. Leicester City won against Gunners with 3:0 result. Brendan Rogers made a very big impact on Foxes game, as they fully controlled the game and had much more chances to score. In this match, Arsenal made 6 goal attempts, although, they were forced to play in the minority after A. Maitland-Niles got the second yellow card.
Arsenal kept very well and steadily the whole season, but as often happens at the end, appears weak or strong teams sides. In this case, Arsenal is a good example of how a team plays badly at crucial moments. The game of the team in the Premier League and in Europe can be very different, as we saw it with Villareal, who played well in the Europa League, but in the La Liga was on the verge of sifting. At home, Arsenal won 8 out of the last 10 matches, saving clean sheet 6 times in all competitions. Unai Emery is a smart and experienced coach, so he should help the team achieve goals this season, although he is already leveling with Arsene Wenger.
Petr Cech has announced his retirement, so Bernd Leno is playing more often in the last games to gain experience. Unfortunately, Rob Holding, Hector Bellerin, Aaron Ramsey, and Danny Welbeck will miss the match due to injuries.
Sead Kolasinac, Shkodran Mustafi, Sokratis, Nacho Monreal
Mesut Ozil, Lucas Torreira, Granit Xhaka, Matteo Guendouzi, Henrikh Mkhitaryan
Valencia, almost the same, as Arsenal, is facing troubles in the last games of La Liga. Guests lost 3 out of 5 last games and moved to 6th place. Until the end of the season, left 3 games, so they need to add confidence to the game if they want to fight for getting into the Champions League. In the last 2 matches, they were very unlucky to lose, as Eibar scored a late goal at the 93rd minute, although, opponents had more goal attempts and chances to score. Earlier, Valencia played with Atletic Madrid in a very interesting and tough match. Even at Wanda Metropolitano, Valencia scored twice and played at a very high level, but still, the hosts were stronger.
The Oranges, this season play very protective football. They are conceding goals rarely but often cannot score too. As a result, we see a lot of draws this season and missed points from a bad realization of the moments. Their defense is 3rd best in Spain. This season they have more draws than wins. On average, in Spain, Valencia scores 1 goal per game. Their attacking potential playing in London will be much weaker than their owners.
Unfortunately, Cristiano Piccini, Geoffrey Kondogbia and Denis Cheryshev will miss the match due to injuries.
Jose Gaya, Gabriel Paulista, Ezequiel Garay, Daniel Wass
Dani Parejo, Francis Coquelin, Carlos Soler
Goncalo Guedes, Kevion Gameiro, Santi Mina
Last time these teams met in 2002/03 Champions League Group stage and year earlier in CL Playoffs. Most interesting, that guests has never won. Valencia won twice and only once Arsenal was better.
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