Ten-man Arsenal succumbed to a 3-1 defeat against Rennes in the first leg of their Europa League round of 16 tie.
Alex Iwobi opened the scoring for the visitors, but the home side replied with three goals, two of them scored by Benjamin Bourigeaud and Ismaila Sarr, while Nacho Monreal added to the French side’s scoreline by netting an own goal.
In a fast start from Unai Emery’s men, Iwobi’s third-minute cross from the left-hand side deceived the Rennes goalkeeper and went into the back of the net.
The game changed when Sokratis Papastathopoulos was sent off in the 41st minute, getting a second yellow after two silly fouls. Seconds after, Bourigeaud thundered in an equaliser for the hosts.
20 minutes into the second half, Monreal turned a Mehdi Ziffane cross into the back of his net to compound misery on Arsenal.
The Gunners conceded a third goal two minutes from time when Sarr found himself free at the far post to head a cross in.
This leaves Arsenal with a mountain to climb at the Emirates Stadium next week, as they don’t look like a side who can keep clean sheets at home as well.
Here’s how we rated their performance on the night:
Petr Cech - 6
Made a couple of good saves and couldn’t have done much to keep the other three out. If not for the veteran, Arsenal might have shipped in four or five.
Shkodran Mustafi - 6
Even though he went down injured in the first half, the German soldiered on and did well. He started at right-back but after Sokratis’ sending off, partnered Laurent Koscielny in central defence.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos - 2
Two very poor challenges in the space of seven minutes ended the Greek international’s game four minutes before half-time. It’s safe to say that no-one expected an experienced defender to make such mistakes.
Laurent Koscielny - 5
The captain was trying his best to organise a makeshift back-line, but he went missing at times, leaving the back door open. A perfect example was the third Rennes goal.
Nacho Monreal - 5
The Spaniard did well in the first half, but after Sokratis’ sending off, he was pegged back. Monreal scored the unlucky own goal and should have sprinted back when he lost the ball in the build-up of the third Rennes goal.
Lucas Torreira - 6
The Uruguayan international was determined to cover every blade of the grass and make it tough for Rennes, especially in the second half. His efforts were telling in the latter stages when he wasn’t able to move freely.
Granit Xhaka - 5
The Swiss international was a calming presence in the first half but couldn’t control proceedings once his team went down to 10 men. He got booked around the hour mark and walked a tightrope.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan - 7
He started the game well but had to revert to an unfamiliar right-back role. Mkhitaryan coped reasonably well there.
Mesut Ozil - 5
The German was trying to knit things together for the Gunners. He missed a great chance when he hit a shot straight at the Rennes goalkeeper. Subbed off for Aaron Ramsey.
Alex Iwobi - 8
It was probably Iwobi’s best performance in an Arsenal shirt for 50 minutes. Got some luck in scoring the goal but was a real threat down the left-hand side. The Nigerian international had to be subbed off in the 52nd minute after Sokratis’ red card.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - 3
It was simply not Aubameyang’s day. Balls up to him were bouncing off and he wasn’t able to get involved in attacks. Subbed off for Sead Kolasinac later on.
(SUB) Matteo Guendouzi - 5
The teenager brought industry in midfield, but it wasn’t enough to keep Rennes out from creating chances.
(SUB) Aaron Ramsey - 4
There wasn’t much time for the Welshman to impact proceedings, especially given the fact that he had to lead the line alone for the final quarter of the game.
(SUB) Sead Kolasinac - N/A
Came on in the final 11 minutes and couldn’t really influence the match.