Arsenal crash out of Europa League

Arsenal crash out of Europa League
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Arsenal’s hopes for a European title ended when the Premier League leader was eliminated from the Europa League by Sporting Lisbon on Thursday in a penalty shootout.

Lisbon reached the quarterfinals by prevailing 5-3 in the shootout at the Emirates Stadium after a 1-1 draw in regulation in the second leg of their round-of-16 encounter. The first leg ended 2-2.

Gabriel Martinelli failed to convert from the spot for Arsenal.

“It’s a huge blow,” Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta told BT Sport. “There were moments, especially during the first 75 minutes, when we weren’t at our level and gave every ball away.”

Meanwhile, Manchester United cruised into the quarterfinals after a 1-0 victory at Real Betis.

Arsenal dominated the extra time with playmaker Martin Ødegaard coming on as a substitute but Sporting goalkeeper Antonia Adán made some stunning saves to force the shootout.

Manuel Ugarte was sent off two minutes before the end of extra time after picking his second yellow card.

Granit Xhaka gave Arsenal a first-half lead on a rebound to complete a flowing move by the hosts. Martinelli had his effort on goal blocked by Adán but the ball came into Xhaka’s path for the Arsenal captain to curl it into the net from inside the area.

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