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Arteta rates Arsenal’s Europa League chances after Villarreal defeat

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Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta believes his side still boasts a good chance of progressing to the final despite losing to Villarreal.

Mikel Arteta says the away-goal scored in Spain keeps Arsenal well alive in the Europa League.

The Gunners fell to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of former boss Unai Emery and company.

Trigueros put Villarreal up just only five minutes into the game before Albiol doubled the lead for Villarreal just before the half-hour mark.

In the absence of a striker for a good part of the game, Arsenal struggled upfront but managed to get a goal from the spot, with Nicolas Pepe calmly converting his effort.

Villarreal still hold the advantage but Arteta believes the away-goal keeps Arsenal firmly in the tie ahead of the return leg next week.

β€œIt gives us belief that if we do the right things and we play at our level, we can beat them,” Arteta told Arsenal Media.

β€œ[I’m] disappointed that we lost the game obviously. We had some issues. The fact that we conceded really early in the game affected us. We lost our organisation, we were really stretched and there were big differences between the lines that we could not join together with the ball.

β€œWe didn’t have enough threat to attack the goal as well. We conceded the second from a set-piece, and we know how vital they are in those ties. We were 2-0 down at half-time so we had to be us.

β€œWe came back in the game, we started to be much more like what we can do, we were much more precise with the ball and were attacking in the right areas. Even with 10 men, I think we were the better team. We had the bigger chance at the end with Auba to make it 2-2 but we are in the tie.”