Saka warns Arsenal to take second chance after ‘horrible’ false start


ukayo Saka says Arsenal’s first-half performance against Villarreal was “horrible” and warned if they start the second leg in a similar fashion, they can forget about reaching the Europa League final.

Both of the hosts’ goals came inside the opening 30 minutes and Arsenal were on the ropes at times during the first half.

Their task was made harder when Dani Ceballos was sent off for a second yellow card just before the hour mark, but they grabbed a vital away goal after Pepe slotted penalty that had been won by Saka.

It means Arsenal can progress to the final of the Europa League if they win the second leg at Emirates Stadium on Thursday 1-0, but Saka has warned his team-mates they must learn from their poor first half in Spain last night.

Saka won a valuable penalty for Arsenal

/ Arsenal FC via Getty Images

“I think the team, the way we started was horrible,” he said. “You can’t start a game like this and it’s no surprise we went 2-0 down.

“I think, to be honest, to go to 10 men and react and get a goal back, I think we did really well. So, we leave ourselves with a good chance of going through at the Emirates.

“There are a lot of positives, which all came in the second half. But, like I said, it’s a semi-final, Europa League, and to start the game like this it’s impossible to have a chance of scoring.

“We didn’t create anything, we lost every duel, we were passive and it’s really frustrating to look back on it.

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