Arsene Wenger backs Arsenal to pass Villareal test in Europa League

The Gunners had fallen to a shock 2-1 defeat in the first leg and will have to turn it around at the Emirates Stadium.

Arsene Wenger in a file photo. (Image credit: Twitter)

Arsenal might have played themselves into a tricky situation as they get ready to host Spanish side Villareal for the second leg of the UEFA Europa League semifinal on Thursday. The Gunners failed to turn the first leg in Spain to their advantage as Villareal came out on top. Arteta’s men were down 2-0 within the first 45 minutes of the match thanks to goals by Manu Trigueros and Raul Albiol but managed to salvage an away goal via a Nicholas Pepe penalty. Now, they must win the match against the Yellow Submarine at the Emirates Stadium, where Arsenal’s record has been far from impressive this season.

Former Arsenal manager and club legend Arsene Wenger shared his thoughts on the second leg and said that he was backing his former side to get the job done. On paper, it seems almost certain for Arsenal to qualify but the Gunners have been inconsistent this season. Wenger said that the Europa League was the only way for them to qualify to the Champions League next season, and also win a trophy in the process.

“I want them to do well,” Wenger told beIN SPORTS. “It’s an opportunity to get to a final and come back to the Champions League. I believe there is no chance of that in the Premier League but it’s still possible (through the Europa League). It will be a success if Arsenal win a trophy, that is always a success, but your real qualities are decided by where you stand in the championship.”

“But overall you still have an advantage playing at home, you feel more comfortable at home. I would say Arsenal have enough offensive potential to win the game. You have so many strikers and people who can score goals and be creative. 2-1 is the result at the moment but you should be quite confident to change and reverse it,” he concluded.

If Arsenal manage to secure a win at the Emirates, then it would set up a monumental tie for a possible final against fierce rivals Manchester United. United are pretty much through to the final after registering a thumping 6-2 win over Italian side AS Roma in the first leg. An Arsenal victory would also mean that both the Champions League and the Europa League will see an all-English final.

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