The Gunners, however, progressed into the quarter-finals ahead of the 10-man Olympiacos team with a 3-2 aggregate scoreline having won 3-1 in the first leg last week.
Mikel Arteta’s side went into Thursday’s second leg boasting three away goals and showing good form, but the Gunners on more than one occasion this season have shown they could bottle things up and looked like they would on Thursday.
The first half ended goalless as Bernd Leno made some excellent saves at one end, while Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who was returned to the starting 11 after he was dropped against Spurs blew away a good chance to give Arsenal a first half lead.
Arsenal had a couple of other chances but failed to be clinical and they were punished with a goal from El Arab six minutes into the second half. However, unlike last season when El Arabi masterminded Arsenal’s exit, the work had been done a week earlier in Athens this time around.
Arteta nonetheless will know they need to be much better in the next round if they are to keep alive their hopes of lifting the Europa League and qualifying for the Champions League.
Elsewhere, Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur were bundled out after losing 3-0 away to Dinamo Zagreb. Spurs had won the first leg 2-0 last week in London but they were edged out 3-2 on the aggregate scoreline.
Roma and Granada are also through to the quarter-finals after getting the right results in their second leg games on Thursday but Rangers fell 2-0 in Glasgow to Slavia Prague. Nigeria international, Peter Olayinka scored the first after 14 minutes. Kemar Roofe and Lean Balogun earned red cards in the second half before Nicolae Stanciu completed the victory with the second goal on 74 minutes.
Manchester United also qualified for the quartet final after defeating AC Milan 1-0 on Thursday night to secure a 2-1 aggregate scoreline.
The eight teams in Friday’s draw are Villarreal, Slavia Prague, Arsenal, Granada, Dinamo Zagreb, Roma, Manchester United, and Ajax.
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