Europa League: Mikel Arteta comes out fighting over Arsenal future as Man United face tough run

Manchester United reached the final of the Europa League – but Arsenal crashed out

Eddie Nketiah of Arsenal looks dejected as the Villareal CF team celebrate victory following the UEFA Europa League semi-final second leg match

Mikel Arteta insists he is still the man to lead Arsenal back to glory despite his side failing to reach the Europa League final after being eliminated by Villarreal.

The Gunners face a first season without European football in 25 years after drawing a blank in their semi-final second leg against Villarreal.

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Arteta’s side were trailing 2-1 from the first leg in Spain and failed to overturn the deficit as Unai Emery got one over his former club to once again reach the final of a competition he thrives in.

Fourth official Matej Jug (L) interacts with Mikel Arteta during the semi-final second leg match between Arsenal and Villareal.

Emery won the Europa League three times as Sevilla manager and took Arsenal to the final in 2019, where they lost to Chelsea.

Manchester United will be waiting for Emery’s Villarreal this time around as Arsenal’s exit prevented both Europa League and Champions League finals from being all-English affairs.

United beat Roma 8-5 on aggregate in an entertaining two-legged tie, despite losing 3-2 last night.

With Arsenal also on course for their worst league finish since 1995/96, Arteta is coming under pressure from some sections of supporters – despite winning the FA Cup last year.

Asked if he still had faith in his own ability to do the job, he simply replied: “Yes.”

Pushed on whether he felt his position is under threat, Arteta added: “I think everybody’s job is under scrutiny.”

The Europa League final offers United a chance to secure their first silverware since winning the competition in 2017, but they have a lot to deal with before then.

The postponed clash against Liverpool has been rearranged for next Thursday, leaving the Red Devils facing four matches in a mere eight days.

After this match in Rome, manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer leads his side to Aston Villa on Sunday before hosting third-placed Leicester on Tuesday and then Jurgen Klopp’s men.

“It’s unheard of,” the Norwegian told BT Sport. “It’s made by people who have never played football at this level.

“It’s physically impossible for the players. We have not been dealt a good hand.

“We are going to need everyone for these four games. It’s a short turnaround but we have to be ready.”