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Europa League: Lacazette to face Rennes as UEFA reduces Arsenal striker's ban

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Arsenal manager Unai Emery

"We all know how important Alex is to us as a group", said the Spaniard.

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"They (United) were in a good moment after one result against PSG but we had a big performance and we are in a good moment in the Premier League", he said.

The French worldwide will now be available for the Gunners' home clash with Rennes at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday night. 'I watched it a lot, the penalty I missed.

So the squad is in decent shape as Arsenal head into a crucial second leg needing to score at least two goals in order to progress to the quarter-finals of the Europa League. 'I had no doubt about taking it, it's about feeling. They've been on a superb run to get the points and close the gap on Spurs to just one point.

It was a simpler time when clubs would predominantly focus on football during the actual football season, and leave forcing their players to travel thousands of kilometres on a plane until they returned from summer break.

"Last week in Rennes was a very different game until the red card for Sokratis Papastathopoulos".

The visitors are enjoying the most successful European campaign in their history and while that may mean they arrive at the Emirates full of confidence, it also means they lack knockout tie experience.

In World Cup victor Ozil they have an experienced campaigner that possesses the ability to unlock defences at will at times and that may well be what is required against Rennes.

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'Now we have two points [more] and that was enough motivation for us.

Arsenal's fine home form will make them slight favourites to overturn the deficit but Emery is wary of a Rennes side who will pose a considerable danger on the counter-attack. Tomorrow is one such match.

Rennes are understandably perturbed that Lacazette should be suddenly made available halfway through the tie, and a month after the incident where he was shown a red card in the last round at Bate Borisov.

"We are all supporting Rennes and all the French teams in the Europa League".

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