Rennes hosts Arsenal in a first game from the Europa League 1/8-finals. Allow us to take a look at this fixture and see what’s the situation with these two teams at the moment.
In the previous round of the competition Rennes achieved a win over Real Betis. The first leg on French soil ended with a 3-3 draw, which gave Betis some advantage before the rematch. But it got really different at the Estadio Benito Villamarin, where Rennes enjoyed a 3-1 win. The French team won the game with goals from Rami Bensebaini, Adrien Hunou and Mbaye Niang, while Giovani Lo Celso’s goal for Betis did not change anything.
In the French Ligue 1 Rennes are currently at the middle of the table, being 10th with 37 points won so far. They are surely having an average season so far, but this could change if they manage to eliminate a club like Arsenal from Europa League.
Arsenal suffered a surprising defeat against BATE Borisov in a first 1/16-finals game, but in the second leg the Gunners did their job against the Belarusians and won with 3-0. BATE’s Volkov scored himself an own goal, while Shkodran Mustafi and Sokratis Papasthathopoulos also put the ball in the net for the Gunners.
Arsenal will surely try to win Europa League this season. Not just because it’s a prestigious trophy, but also because it’s not guaranteed that the Gunners will finish in the Top 4 of the Premier League. Winning Europa League could be Arsenal’s key to the Champions League for next season and the manager Unai Emery knows this very well.
Rennes will have a tough task against Arsenal on Thursday night, but it won’t be easy for Arsenal as well. We have all the reasons to expect a great clash between these two teams.