Martin Keown thinks the Slavia Prague players could already have done Mikel Arteta’s team talk for him ahead of their Europa League quarter-final second leg.
Following the final whistle, the Prague players were understandably pleased after the dramatic draw, but they might have taken it a bit too far.
That’s according to ex-Gunners defender Keown, who thinks the Arsenal players should be desperate to get back out there next week and progress following the celebrations.
Speaking on BT Sport, the 54-year-old said: “There was a different emphasis in the second-half, Arsenal decided not to pass it out from the back and thought ‘let’s just go long’.
“About the time they made the changes, and suddenly it was a different Arsenal.
“We saw a bit more energy, Aubameyang coming off the bench and it looked like he was up for it – it was the real Aubameyang when he came on.
“Pepe grabbed the goal for us, a little link-up between the two. It looked like it was going to be Arsenal’s night, but we saw what happened.
“They’re not out of this tie yet. I would play it back to the Arsenal players: the Slavia Prague players celebrating at the end of the match because that should hurt them a little bit, do they think they’ve won it?
“The attitude of this group should be about relishing the opportunity to get back into it. Of course, the away goal hurts Arsenal but they’re not out of this tie.”
Now for the Gunners, they travel up to Sheffield United on Sunday, where they may look to rest a few big names ahead of the return leg next Thursday.
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Tomas Holes’ late leveller for the Czech club ensured they have a slight advantage going into next week’s clash – which will be played at the Sinobo Stadium – with the away goal often proving crucial.
The Europa League is realistically Arsenal’s only chance to get back in the Champions League next season, with lifting the trophy earning automatic qualification to Europe’s most prestigious competition.