Arsenal booked their place to spare following a goalless draw against Sporting Lisbon in the Emirates on Thursday afternoon\.
His replacement, Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang struck in the second half as the Gunners came \to a winner since Sporting, who’d Jeremy Mathieu held on for a point.
The draw was enough to see Unai Emery’s side, that extended his unbeaten run to 15 matches, through the previous 32 because of Qarabag’s 1-0 win at Vorskla but they might have to wait till their next match – a visit to Vorskla around November 29 – to get the opportunity to seal top spot in Group E.
Arsenal: Cech (6 ) ), Lichtsteiner (7), Sokratis (6 ) ), Holding (6), Jenkinson (6), Guendouzi (7 ) ), Ramsey (5), Mkhtiaryan (6), Smith Rowe (6), Iwobi (6 ) ), Welbeck (6 ) ).
Subs: Aubameyang (6), Kolasinac (6), Maitland-Niles (6).
Sporting Lisbon: Ribeiro (7), Gaspar (6 ) ), Coates (7), Mathieu (6), Acuna (7), Nani (7 ) ), Miguel Luis (6), Gudelj (6), Bruno Fernandes (7), Montero (6 ) ), Diaby (7 ) ).
Subs: Dost (6), Cabral (n/a), Petrovic (n/a).
Man of the match: Sebastain Coates
After a relatively quiet start in north London, the game burst into life when Matteo Guendouzi cross was nearly turned into his own net by Mathieu, but together with all the ball hooked the ball\.
When Welbeck fell after going up for a header against Bruno Gaspar, Arsenal were subsequently dealt a huge setback\. The 27-year-old, that has had his share of terrible luck with injuries through time, was stretchered from the field.
Aubameyang who broke the deadlock minutes getting across his guy to fulfill the low cross of Henrikh Mkhitaryan substituted welbeck but the striker’s shot clipped the top of the crossbar.
Sporting threatened the Arsenal target but they served up a reminder beyond Aaron Ramsey as former Manchester United winger Nani burst and into the Gunners’ half. He pulled the ball back from the byline in search of Fredy Montero but Petr Cech browse the pass, diving off his line to collect ahead of the striker.
Arsenal suffered a further injury setback if Stephan Lichtsteiner pulled up with a hamstring injury and Ainsley Maitland-Niles replaced him with 17 minutes remaining.
The Gunners pushed for a winner but the game continued with no actual odds of note, Mkhitaryan stabbing an
Alex Iwobi cross towards goal before Aubameyang saw an attempt .
Arsenal team news
Meanwhile, Petr Cech returned in goal, Sokratis returned in defence, Aaron Ramsey started in central midfield alongside Matteo Guendouzi and Danny Welbeck led the line. Lucas Torreira pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Shkodran Mustafi and Saed Kolasinac all dropped down into the subs bench.
Aubameyang thought he had a to win it but was fouled by Mathieu, who was shown a straight red card to its trip that was doubtful. Since Sporting maintained on, aubameyang fired the \within the crossbar.
- Arsenal failed to score just the second time below director Unai Emery, also drawing on a blank against Man City at the Spaniard’s first match in charge (0-2).
- Sporting CP didn’t have a single shot on goal in either of their encounters with Arsenal this season.
- Excluding qualifiers, Arsenal have kept three successive clean sheets from European competition for the first time since the 2007-08 Champions League group stages.
- Sporting kept their first away clean sheet at the Europa League because September 2011 (2-0 vs FC Zurich), ending a streak of 18 games where they’d surrendered.
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang had twice as many shots as another Arsenal player (4), however not one of them was on target.
Unai Emery:”It’s the worst thing tonight, this harm. It is clear that we are with Welbeck in these minutes.He was working well and he had been having a fantastic match. He had some chances too.His harm was using the mentality of those players. They found it was a huge injury. It can happen, Whenever you’re playing football, once you’re playing in matches. You don’t want it to happen but that is our livelihood\. He is at the hospital. The good thing is that we are going to wait but we think that it’s a serious injury.”
Tiago Fernandes:”The players did exactly what I asked them to perform. In our game strategy we understand we needed to be strict and they had been perfect about that. We were aware of the competitor’s caliber but we, understanding our capacity and being creative and competitive with and without match, could try to surprise .”
Man of the Match – Sebastian Coates
It proved for the Gunners and the former Liverpool and Sunderland defender played a part.
He kept his side \once Mathieu redirected the cross towards his own goal line of Guendouzi.
He then set his body on the line through the second to generate an excellent block to deny Aubameyang and help his side\.
What is next?
Arsenal are back in Premier League action on Sunday when they take on Wolves in the Emirates Stadium (4.30pm). Next up in the Europa League is a trip to Ukraine to take on Vorskla (November 29, 5.55pm).
Sporting come in national action on Sunday hosting Chaves from the Primeira Liga (8pm). The following Europa League match is a visit to Azerbaijan to confront Qarabag (November 29, 5.55pm).