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After the Everton loss, can Arsenal save their season?

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Bernd Leno’s blunder on Friday night handed Arsenal their 13th defeat in the Premier League this season.

Given their league position, all hopes for this season are now pinned on Europa League success.

The battle from fourth to eighth in the EPL table between Chelsea, West Ham United, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and Everton sees the quintet separated by six points.

With Arsenal a further six points behind with five games to go, it seems the only option for European football is to win the Europa League.

Arsenal now turn their attention to their midweek fixture against Villarreal at the El Madrigal.

They will come up against former manager Unai Emery and his Villarreal team, who sit in seventh in La Liga table at the time of writing, one spot outside the European places.

The last time Arsenal faced Villareal in a semi-final, they beat them 1-0 over two legs thanks to a Kolo Toure goal. They progressed to the 2005-2006 Champions League final, which they lost 2-1 to Barcelona.

Manager Mikel Arteta will undoubtedly be hoping they overcome their Spanish opponents once again before securing a different result in the final of another European competition.

But with Alexandre Lacazette, Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang and Kieran Tierney still sidelined and the poor Everton result going into the game, Arteta will be praying his key men come back in time to push for the win over two legs.

Arteta has received plenty of support from fans despite a worse start to his Arsenal managerial career than Emery.

While that support is expected to last until next season, Arsenal fans will still expect their team to show up against Villareal and beat them over two legs.

And a Europa League final against either Roma or Manchester United? Anything can happen in a 90-minute game.

Read: ‘He wasn’t ready for a job at this level’: Chelsea star makes Lampard admission.

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