Arsenal’s Europa League campaign came to an end after they were knocked out by Sporting CP in the last-16 tie, but Martin Odegaard has called on the team to bounce back stronger.
The Gunners drew both legs of the tie but were defeated on penalties after Gabriel Martinelli missed from the spot. This latest result extends their winless run in knockout matches at home in the Europa League to five games.
Odegaard, who joined Arsenal on loan in January, acknowledged that the team had not played at their best, saying “Part of the game we did well but, throughout the whole game, we didn’t play our best football. It was a tight game in the end and could have gone both ways.”
However, he also highlighted the importance of learning from the experience and moving forward, adding “We have to look forward and be ready for Sunday.”
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With 11 games left to play, Arsenal are currently five points ahead of Manchester City in the Premier League. Odegaard is now focused on the team’s upcoming league campaign and has urged his side to respond positively against Crystal Palace on Sunday. “We have to look at Sunday, come back stronger, and make sure we finish well in the league, that’s the only thing we can do now,” he said.
Despite the disappointment of being knocked out of the Europa League, Odegaard stressed that the team had achieved great things this season, saying “We have to remember it has been a great season, we’ve done amazing things this year.”
He also emphasized the importance of maintaining team spirit, saying “We win and lose together. It doesn’t matter. When we’re winning everyone is happy, when we lose we have to pick up the spirit.”
Arsenal now have the opportunity to focus their energy on the Premier League, and with a strong finish, they could secure a spot in next season’s Champions League.