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Martin Keown asked which Arsenal players impressed vs Vitoria

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Martin Keown asked which Arsenal players impressed vs Vitoria

Martin Keown suggested during BT Sport’s live post-match coverage of Arsenal’s latest Europa League tie (broadcast on 6/11; 18:04) that, barring Kieran Tierney and perhaps Shkodran Mustafi, none of Unai Emery’s side did enough during the 1-1 draw with Vitoria to send a message to the Gunners boss.

Arsenal have taken a further step towards the knockout stages of the competition. They remain unbeaten and only a bizarre run of results is likely to deny them comfortably going through.

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Unfortunately, their result in Portugal only increased the pressure on Emery’s shoulders. Arsenal were poor. They only put one attempt on target and conceded an equaliser in stoppage-time.

And after the game, Keown was asked whether any of those who featured have improved their first-team prospects with their performance. The former Arsenal defender hinted that only two players can maybe afford to feel content with their individual displays.

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“I think Tierney’s just starting to get a place in the team,” he told BT Sport. “Ceballos getting injured means that Torreira and Guendouzi will probably now play [against Leicester] sat in that midfield. But no-one has really stood out tonight.

“Mustafi might have taken some steps back into our hearts and minds, but I don’t see him starting an Arsenal game, so no, it was a difficult night for all of them.”


Before Wednesday, the Europa League had provided some respite for Emery. The competition has seen a number of exciting young players come into the side and make a real impact. Of course, the Gunners went all the way to the final last season.

They can afford to look at the competition slightly differently for the time-being with qualification almost secured, particularly with Leicester ahead this weekend.

But it is surely fair to say that Arsenal’s performance has done little to help Emery.

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