Arsenal begin the second leg of their Europa League semi-final against Villarreal 2-1 down. They still haven't got a place in European competition next season, so another reason to win this tie. Barring a miracle, it's Manchester United who will be waiting for them in the final if they get that far. A win at Newcastle on Sunday kept alive their hopes of a top seven finish. Winning this competition would see them finally get Champions League football. Hopes of a European Super League place are thankfully dead and buried. The Gunners got off to a terrible start in the away leg of this semi-final, going 2-0 down in 29 minutes. A 73rd minute penalty by Pepe has given them plenty of hope of turning the tie around. The win at Newcastle ended a run of three matches without a win. Home form is a worry for Arsenal with their last five producing two draws, three losses and only two goals. Neither of the last two home Europa League games have been won either. They have to go on the attack in this game to get back into the tie but can they keep it tight at the back? Four of their last five home Europa League matches has seen both teams get on the scoresheet.
Villarreal had productive months in both March and April with nine wins. That's put them in sixth in La Liga and this Europa League semi final. The first leg win was followed up by a 1-0 home success over Getafe on Sunday. That made it four wins and two losses in their last six league and cup games. They are one of the draw kings in La Liga with 13 this season. Only Real Valladolid on 16 have had more. However, they seem to have gotten that out of their system with no draws in their last 16 games in all competitions. What would they give for a draw at the Emirates? On their travels, Villarreal had won five in a row before losing at Alaves. Their last 12 away games in the Europa League have seen just one defeat and that was to fellow La Liga side Valencia. Only in that game have they failed to score in their last nine on the road in this competition. Six of their last seven matches have seen both teams get on the scoresheet. A bet on that stat coming up on Thursday is the one to go for.