Arsenal left to sweat over Mkhitaryan as duo return for Rennes clash

Arsenal will assess Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s back injury ahead of their Europa League last-16 second leg with Rennes.

Mkhitaryan missed Sunday’s Premier League win over his former club Manchester United but trained on Wednesday and will have a check before the game.

Alexandre Lacazette is available after UEFA reduced his three-match suspension to two games on appeal, while Lucas Torreira returns from a domestic ban. Sokratis Papastathopoulos is suspended, though, after his red card in last week’s 3-1 first-leg loss in France.

Arsenal manager Unai Emery is demanding his side give their best performance against Rennes.

The Gunners’ Europa League hopes are hanging by a thread as they try and overturn a 3-1 loss from the first leg last week.

Emery said: “We are demanding ourselves, that is a positive issue. We want to play big matches, tough matches against the best teams.

“In the Europa League we are finding some results like the last round against BATE Borisov difficult, this round the same with a bad result in the first match.”

Emery added: “It is a tough match tomorrow but our demand to get the best performance is very high.

“I want to play matches that are difficult, with tough situations against tough players.

“It is one match we need to be together and create a big atmosphere in the Emirates with our supporters to help us give us the best performance possible in 90 minutes.”


Arsenal (from): Leno, Cech, Maitland-Niles, Lichtsteiner, Jenkinson, Mustafi, Koscielny, Mavropanos, Monreal, Kolasinac, Torreira, Xhaka, Guendouzi, Elneny, Iwobi, Mkhitaryan, Suarez, Ramsey, Ozil, Aubameyang, Lacazette, Nketiah.