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Arsenal star Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang reveals real reason for Black Panther mask

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His second goal of the night in a 3-0 win over Rennes was more than enough to see the Gunners into the last eight of the Europa League with a 4-3 aggregate win which sees them join Chelsea in today’s draw.

And with Manchester City, Liverpool, Tottenham and Manchester United set also to learn their Champions League fate, it marks a heroic week for English teams.

“I needed a mask which represents me and that’s the Black Panther,” Aubameyang said. “In Gabon we call the national team the Panthers!

“I missed two chances to close the game but the most important thing is that we won and everybody is happy and proud.

“Rennes were a bit nervous and angry as well but that’s football sometimes and it can happen like that.”

Aubameyang was booked for the celebration, but it was the one sour note from a clinical if not particularly overwhelming performance by Arsenal that keeps manager Unai Emery in the hunt for his fourth success in this competition.

“The Europa League grew up a lot,” he said. “Now it is giving a possibility to play in Champions League.

“In a domestic league like in England we are six playing for top four so two teams are going out. So the Europa League is giving us a big opportunity also.

“But it is not just about qualification for the Champions League. Also it is one title.

“I said to my players, I am excited about this competition. It’s a title. We can feel the possibility to win a title with difficult moments like today.”

Aubameyang should have been flagged offside in the build-up to the second Arsenal goal, scored by Ainsley Maitland-Niles, and Rennes coach Julien Stephan suggested the big decisions had gone in Arsenal’s favour throughout.

“On the offside, it was very clearly an injustice – a manifest error,” he said. “A commission decided that Alexandre Lacazette’s elbow against BATE was only worth two games.

“Then, when already on a yellow, he made a challenge which was over the mark, but the decision didn’t go our way. There were a few elements against us.

“It’s a learning curve for a club of our level, we don’t have the power of Arsenal.”

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Spurs stars react to Belgium’s win over Cyprus

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Belgium recorded a 0-2 win over Cyprus in last night’s Euro 2020 qualifier. Goals from Eden Hazard and Michy Batshuayi ensured Roberto…

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Arsenal news: Yannick Carrasco opens door to move with latest comments

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Express Sport revealed earlier this month that Arsenal are still keen on Carrasco after failing to land him in the January transfer window.

Carrasco seemed keen on the move, having spent the last year playing for Dalian Yifang in China.

The Gunners tried to get a deal over line in January, but there were concerns of Arsenal’s request that the deal was a loan.

Arsenal manager Unai Emery noted at the beginning of the window that they had intentions of securing players on loan because they couldn’t afford any permanent signings.

And now it seems that weeks before the summer transfer window opens, Carrasco has issued his first plea for European clubs to sign him.

“I would love to return to Europe. A lot of clubs were interested in me,” Carrasco told Belgian outlet HLN.

“We tried to find a solution in January that would enable me to leave Dalian Yifang.

“But I can understand the club’s thinking. They wanted me to stay.”

Carrasco also noted that he had lost his place in the starting eleven for Belgium.

“I still feel OK in China. But I have lost my starting place in the Belgian national side,” he added.

“This can happen with a team of their quality.

“With the level of competition there will always be times when you don’t get to play a lot.”

Arsenal have also been linked with moves for Inter Milan’s Ivan Perisic, as well as Paris Saint-Germain’s Christopher Nkunku.

The club are believed to be searching for a long-term replacement for Hector Bellerin at right-back, who is expected to be sidelined with an ACL injury until the beginning of next season.

Crystal Palace’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka is the front-runner to become Arsenal’s next right-back but they also have Ainsley Maitland-Niles who will be desperate to prove his worth at the Emirates.

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Video: Leroy Sane helps Germany to victory over Netherlands

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Germany beat Netherlands 2-3 in a Euro 2020 qualifier in Amsterdam last night. Goals from Manchester City’s Leroy Sane and Bayern…

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