Unai Emery’s side have it all to do on Thursday night as the welcome a Rennes side to the Emirates who, somewhat surprisingly, hold a 3-1 first leg lead in this Europa League Round of 16 tie. Since the Europa League’s inception, only one side has ever progressed after losing 3-1 in the first leg. Can the Gunners pull off a stunning comeback?
Arsenal vs Stade Rennais
Europa League 2018-19
Where to Watch
Venue: Emirates Stadium
Date: 14 March 2019
Kick Off Time: 20:00 GMT
Referee: Andris Treimanis
TV Channel / Live Stream: Live on BT Sport 2, BT Sport 4K UHD or via the BT Sport Mobile app on your mobile or tablet device.
Stade Rennais vs Arsenal – The Latest Betting Odds
Let’s start with the match odds. The bookies expect Arsenal to win quite comfortably on Thursday night. They’re priced up at 3/10 to win, whereas Rennes are available at 10/1. The draw is at 5/1 if you fancy it.
Correct Score Odds
A 2-0 win will see Arsenal progress. The bookies have priced that scoreline up at around 6/1, which is actually the shortest priced correct score for this match. If you think the Gunners will make it look more comfortable, 3-0 is available at 15/2, with 4-0 at 12/1.
Let’s not forget, though, that Rennes managed to score three against Arsenal last week. A 3-1 home win would take it to extra time, and it’s available at odds of 9/1.
If you think the French side will prevail in 90mins, consider 1-1 at 10s, or even 2-1 Arsenal at 8s.
Arsenal are 10/11 to progress, whereas Rennes are 4/5. The bookies haven’t got a clue who will progress looking at those prices, which makes for an intriguing night at the Emirates. If you’re a neutral that is. Arsenal fans might not enjoy the tension so much. A lot of fingernails will be bitten no doubt.
First Goalscorer Odds
Alexandre Lacazette is back and 7/2 to notch the opener. His strike partner, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been priced up as the favourite to score first at odds of 21/10. Alex Iwobi scored early on in France, and he’s 8/1 to bag the first goal on Thursday night. That might be worth a few pennies if he starts.
What about Rennes? If you think they can silence the Emirates by scoring first, consider Hatem Ben Arfa at 12/1 or Ismaila Sarr at 14/1.
Arsenal Team News – Injuries and Suspensions
The good news for Arsenal is that Alexandre Lacazette looks set to start after his ban was reduced to just two games on appeal. Sokratis Papastathopoulos (try saying that after a few drinks) is banned, so Unai Emery may have to shake things up at the back. There won’t be much defending being done on Thursday though, as Arsenal need to go for it.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan missed the United game at the weekend with a back problem, and it remains to be seen if he will be back fit enough to start here.
Arsenal Predicted XI: Cech, Maitland-Niles, Mustafi, Lichtsteiner, Monreal, Torreira, Ramsey, Ozil, Iwobi, Aubameyang, Lacazette
Arsenal vs Rennes – Prediction
3-0. Arsenal know what they need to do. It will be tough, that’s for sure, but an Arsenal side in full flow at home can beat anyone. Rennes may defend too much initially, which may see the Gunners score an early goal. Panic may then set in and Arsenal could grab a couple more.
I fully expect Arsenal to give 110% on Thursday night, and I don’t think Rennes will be able to cope with that. With that in mind, and the fact that 2-0 would see them through, Arsenal -1.75 on the Asian Handicap at odds of 17/16 looks a good bet.
Key Match Facts and Stats
- Only one team have progressed in the Europa League after losing the first leg 3-1. That was Fulham against Juventus in 2009.
- Rennes have only lost once in seven knockout matches in European competition.
- Arsenal have progressed in just three of 18 matches when they’ve lost the first leg.
- Ismaila Sarr has been directly involved in six goals for Rennes in the Europa League so far this season.
- Arsenal have had more different goalscorers than any other team in their year’s competition.