Arsenal 1-1 Sporting (Agg 3-3; 3-5 on pens): Gabriel Martinelli misses from spot as Gunners crash out of Europa League | Football News

Report from Europa League Round of 16 second leg match between Arsenal and Sporting at Emirates Stadium; Pedro Goncalves struck from the center circle after Granit Xhaka’s opener before Gabriel Martinelli’s shot was saved on penalties

From Peter Smith, senior football journalist @psmithXI

23:48, UK, Thursday 16 March 2023

At the end of an epic Europa League round of 16 clash against Sporting, it was heartbreak for Arsenal on penalties when Gabriel Martinelli’s shot was saved from the penalty spot to allow the Portuguese side to advance to the quarters after the sides drew 3-1. 1 at night and 3-3 in total.

Even before the penalty shoot-out, which the guests won 5-3, it was a tough second leg.

Arsenal were on course to qualify in relative comfort when Granit Xhaka staved off the rebound from Martinelli’s shot in the first half, but the Gunners failed to shoot at all in the second half and were sensationally held back by Pedro Goncalves’ outrageous lob from the center circle .

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With Aaron Ramsdale crawling back in his own goal mouth, it was a goal that would have made Arsenal fans think of Nayim’s goal in the 1995 Cup Winners’ Cup final against David Seaman.

The drama continued as Leandro Trossard’s shot was shoved against a post in extra time before Sporting goalkeeper Antonio Adan made another super stop to parry Gabriel’s header. In the 118th minute, the Arsenal defender was denied by a goal-line block by Ousmane Diomande before the visitors’ Manuel Ugarte was sent off.

But in the end Sporting prevailed, with Nuno Santos converting the crucial penalty. With a five-point lead in the Premier League, Mikel Arteta’s men will need to focus all their energies on national affairs as Crystal Palace travel to the Emirates on Sunday.

How the penalty shootout went…

team player Result
Sporty Jeremiah St Juste achieved
arsenal Martin Odegaard achieved
Sporty Ricardo Esgaio achieved
arsenal Bukayo Saka achieved
Sporty Goncalo Inácio achieved
arsenal Leandro Trossard achieved
Sporty Arthur Gomes achieved
arsenal Gabriel Martinelli Saved a penalty
Sporty Nuno Santos achieved

The draw for the quarter-finals of the Europa League will take place on Friday 17 March at 12:00 UK time in Nyon, Switzerland, at UEFA’s headquarters. The semifinals will also be drawn. You can follow the draw with Sky Sports’ live blog.

Aaron Ramsdale is over-praised against Sporting in the Europa League duel

How Sporting beat Arsenal in an epic

On a wet and wild night in north London, these two sides, who had staged an uncontrolled but entertaining encounter in the first leg in Lisbon, delivered another memorable encounter.

Gabriel Jesus was the center of attention before the game, looking sharp in his first start since November. He lasted 45 minutes as he ramped up his comeback from knee surgery and was not far from marking his return with a goal from Reiss Nelson’s 15th-minute cross.

Soon Arsenal were ahead. Jorginho had thrown in a through ball for Fabio Vieira into the box just moments before, but his slide rule from his own half was the defensive splitter he was looking for, sending Martinelli on target. When the Brazilian’s shot was parried down Xhaka’s barrel, the Swiss had an easy finish.

Arsenal had already lost Takehiro Tomiyasu to injury by that point and William Saliba limped away before play could restart, but the break in the back line didn’t affect their forward play as Sporting goalkeeper Adan was keen to put Martinelli and Jesus in quicker keep the episode away.

Sporting’s Marcus Edwards, right, dueles for the ball with Arsenal’s Reiss Nelson

However, with Jeremiah St Juste’s powerful dribbling, Sporting were dangerous on the counterattack and Ugarte’s well-aimed shot was deflected just inches just before half-time. They started the second half as they started the first, outstanding – and this time they did it sensationally.

Sporting had held Arsenal back from the restart but it was a stunning Goncalves strike from near the halfway line that leveled them and caught Ramsdale.

When Paulinho headed to the roof of the net from a corner and Marcus Edwards fired a one-on-one chance in Ramsdale’s face, it felt like the momentum of the tie had turned in Sporting’s favour.

But chances arose in extra time for Arsenal and Trossard was agonizingly close to winning the ball when Adan reached his shot with his hand, the ball skidding off the wet surface and against the woodwork.

There was another super stop in the final moments of the game to keep Gabriel away before Diomande denied the defender on the goal line. After all that, there was still time for Ugarte, who had to be sent off after showing a second yellow for slipping in against Bukayo Saka.

Martin Odegaard, Saka and Trossard were safe from the penalty spot but Martinelli’s shot down the middle failed to live up to their conviction and Nuno Santos scored five of five for Sporting to eliminate their hosts.

Gabriel Martinelli is comforted by teammates after missing his penalty

Athletic players celebrate after penalty shootout

Arteta: A heavy blow, we had great chances

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta: “A big blow, we really wanted to progress and fight for the competition. Congratulations to Sporting Lisbon for progressing.

“We didn’t find our rhythm and flow, we gave away too many spaces and gave the ball away many, many times. In the last 20 minutes we got the flow, created three big chances and didn’t score. In overtime -time we showed unbelievable energy and a top mentality again and we had two great chances, but on penalties it’s a lottery.

“The disappointment will not go away, but it will bring clarity. We now have a final: Crystal Palace.”

Opta Stats – Another Europa League knockout defeat at the Emirates for Arsenal

  • Arsenal have not won in their last five knockout games at the Emirates Stadium in the UEFA Europa League (U3 L2) since beating Valencia 3-1 in May 2019.
  • Sporting have won their first-ever penalty shoot-out in Europe, having lost their previous two (against Dinamo Minsk in November 1984 and Napoli in September 1989).
  • Arsenal have alternately won (2) and lost (3) in each of their five penalty shootouts in Europe. Tonight’s shootout was the Gunners’ 23rd overall in all competitions and only their second on home soil following a 9-8 win over Rotherham at Highbury in October 2003.
  • Pote’s equalizer for Sporting (46.05 yards) was the widest goal scored in a UEFA Europa League game since Harry Winks’ goal for Spurs against Ludogorets Razgrad in November 2020 (53.98 yards).
  • Manuel Ugarte’s dismissal was Sporting’s fourth red card in Europe this season, more than any other team (excluding qualifiers).

When are the quarterfinals?

The first legs of the quarter-finals will be played on Thursday, April 13.

The second leg will be played on Thursday, April 20th.

When are the semifinals?

The first leg of the semi-finals will be played on May 11th and the second leg on May 18th.

When is the final?

The final will take place on May 31st at the Puskas Arena in Budapest, Hungary.

What’s next?

Arsenal are back in the Premier League at 2pm on Sunday when they host Crystal Palace. Watch free highlights of this match on Sky Sports website, app or YouTube page.

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