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Will the Frankfurt defeat be the final nail in Unai Emery’s Arsenal coffin?


Arsenal vs Eintracht Frankfurt

Arsenal’s penultimate Europa League group game of the 2019/20 season took place on Thursday vs Eintracht Frankfurt.

The Gunners headed into the clash in pretty awful form.

Arsenal were without a win in their previous six games across all competitions before kicking off at the Emirates.

However, while the North London outfit had been struggling in the Premier League, their Europa League form had been fairly respectable.

Arsenal began the day top of Group F with a commanding four-point lead over Standard Liege and Frankfurt after going unbeaten in their previous four EL ties.

So, Arsenal knew a win vs the German outfit would ensure they topped Group F.

Xhaka returns to Arsenal’s starting XI

Arsenal released their starting line-up to face Frankfurt around an hour before kick-off.

The eleven was pretty strong with perhaps the most notable inclusion Granit Xhaka.

Thursday’s clash was Xhaka’s first appearance for Arsenal since being booed off vs Crystal Palace back in October.

The Swiss international seemed to be met with a rather mixed reaction from the Arsenal fans inside the Emirates when his named was announced prior to kick off.

Luiz withdrawn early

Arsenal carved out the first big chance of the evening as Bukayo Saka floated a good cross into the Frankfurt box but Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang failed to guide his effort on target.

The Gunners continued to press Frankfurt with Gabriel Martinelli having two good chances in quick succession around 15 minutes in.

But after failing to take advantage of their early dominance, Arsenal were handed a blow around the half-hour mark.

David Luiz started the evening alongside Xhaka in Arsenal’s midfield but the Brazilian had to be withdrawn in the 31st minute.

Luiz appeared to be suffering from some sort of rib problem.

Arsenal seemed to drop their tempo a bit after the Luiz injury. But they would up their intensity at the back end of the first-half with Aubameyang firing Emery’s side in front in first-half injury time.

LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 28: David Luiz of Arsenal receives medical attention during the UEFA Europa League group F match between Arsenal FC and Eintracht Frankfurt at Emirates Stadium on November 28, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Chloe Knott – Danehouse/Getty Images)

Time up for Emery?

Arsenal began the second 45 at full throttle with both Joe Willock and Calum Chambers having great chances to double Arsenal’s advantage with just a couple of minutes gone.

But it would be the Bundesliga outfit who struck first in the second half after Daichi Kamada hit a sweet strike from the edge of the Arsenal box.

Emery was quick to respond to the Frankfurt equaliser as Martinelli made way for Mesut Ozil.

The change seemed to have very little impact though as Kamada fired Frankfurt into the lead with 64 minutes on the clock.

Yet despite going 2-1 down, Unai Emery opted to bring on Lucas Torreira as his final sub while both Alexandre Lacazette and Nicolas Pepe remained on the bench.

After blowing their 1-0 lead Arsenal remained rather flat for the rest of the tie.

And with Arsenal now winless in seven games across all competitions and it already being reported Emery was on the brink of being sacked, will the Frankfurt defeat by the final nail in Unai Emery’s coffin?

Arsenal mustered up very little attacking threat after going behind on Thursday and after another lackluster outing it is hard to see Emery ever repairing his relationship with the Arsenal faithful.

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