Match Report – Rennes 3 Arsenal 1 – Europa League

I have slowly come about trying to review this game. I had said that Rennes had the potential to be a tricky tie. After they beat Betis last round they had potential to score goals.

We scored within 4 minutes when Iwobi’s cross/shot curled to the far post and went in via the post. We were in control of game through out the first half but away susceptible to the switch of play and direct running.

On 34 minutes Sokratis took a silly booking sliding in very early for the player to run in and fall over his body. Very soft and avoidable.

I have spoken about how we can play two defenders who are always playing on the edge. Two very impulsive players Mustafi and Sokratis. There are always mistakes in judgement from them.

9 minutes after the first card a neat attacking move found Papa the wrong side of the striker and his lack of pace meant he would be behind. The striker was clever to try and link arms to get a tangle and he managed it as a clumsy tug meant the player went down for a free kick but with the player going on goal the second yellow came out.

The dangerous free kick was blocked originally but the ball came back out to Bourigeaud who snapped a laser like shot across goal to equalise.

What was worrying after the sending off and half time the team were not drilled to deal with the threats in the second half. Time and time again the home side came forward mostly after putting pressure on us to force errors and when Monreal diverted a cross into the net.

We finished the game with no striker and had nothing to offer and in final minutes we lose the ball deep in the other half for Rennes to switch play quickly and they a pinpoint cross to the back post saw the third goal go in.

Means we now have to win 2-0 on Thursday to progress.

Very disappointing.

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