Arsenal held talks with Rennes over Senegal forward Ismaila Sarr

Ross Houston
March 15, 2019

Unai Emery has exceeded all expectations in his debut season at Arsenal, says John Hartson, with few tipping Arsene Wenger's successor to make such an immediate impression.

"In the domestic league, like here, we have six teams playing to be in the top four".

Arsenal have missed out on Champions League football for the last two seasons, and their poor away record remains a big concerns.

The Rennes boss Julien Stephan told this correspondent last week after the match at Roazhon Park in deepest Brittany that his team were facing a hard evening at the Emirates in the second leg. I said to the players today, I am excited about this competition.

Gabon global Aubameyang is more used to featuring in the Champions League than Europe's second-tier competition, but his early impact with a goal and an assist was decisive for the Gunners.

With the game in the balance, Aubameyang added a third for Arsenal to settle the tie and leave his side with a chance of lifting their first European trophy in more than two decades.

The Gabonese striker then proceeded to celebrate by putting on a Black Panther mask, which he was duly booked for by the referee.

The ill-tempered feel to the match continued throughout a nervy second half as a number of strong challenges went unpunished.

In the past the striker has worn Batman and Spiderman masks to toast goals - but he explained why this time was a special moment.

"It's the Black Panther and in Africa, in Gabon, we call the national team the Black Panthers of Gabon..."

The goals helped Arsenal battle back from a 3-1 first-leg deficit.

Arsenal pick up a 3-0 win over Rennes in the second leg of their Europa League last-16 tie at the Emirates Stadium to advance through 4-3 on aggregate.

"On the offside, it was very clearly an injustice, it was an error", he said.

"There were quite a few things that went against us over the past couple of days".

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