Arsenal knows it wasted a chance to deliver a huge advantage after 90 minutes of their Europa League Round of 32 tie with Benfica.
An unfortunate penalty for handball was only answered by Bukayo Saka, as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and the Gunners couldn’t deliver a second goal at Benfica in a 1-1 draw.
Gunners manager Mikel Arteta was asked whether he was disappointed to walk away with an away goal being the side’s lone advantage from the first leg.
“I think so,” he said. “We were very dominant. We created some big chances and in Europe when you have that away from home you have to be more ruthless. The disappointing thing is we just gave them the goal and it’s 1-1. There’s all to play for. We could be in a better position but everything will be decided in the next game.”
Aubameyang admitted the same on Twitter after the game.
Arsenal’s star striker failed to build on a hat trick at the weekend, missing two very good chances on the day.
“We deserved better and I should score couple goals today but still one game to go. We keep going,” he Tweeted, adding some praise for goal scorer Saka.
— AUBA⚡️ (@Aubameyang7) February 18, 2021
Arteta said it’s down to luck.
The Arsenal boss credited Aubameyang for getting into positions of danger and said the bounces just didn’t go his way.
“Well, these things happen,” Arteta said. “He was at the end of the biggest chances that we had tonight. He was unlucky not to score two or three tonight because in normal circumstances that would be the case.”
Their next opponent, Man City, does not make a habit of presenting chances.
To be fair, neither does Benfica. Next Thursday will be a big test for an Arsenal side whose best route to the Champions League is likely winning the UEL.
"We created some big chances and in Europe, when you have that away from home, you have to be more ruthless."
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta bemoans missed opportunities after drawing away vs. Benfica 😬
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) February 18, 2021