Mkhitaryan a doubt for Arsenal’s Europa League clash with Rennes

Henrikh Mkhitaryan is a doubt for Arsenal’s deciding Europa League second leg last-16 tie against Rennes, per the London Evening Standard.

The midfielder has struggled with injury all season and has made just 18 Premier League appearances.

What’s the word?

Mkhitaryan missed the weekend’s win over Manchester United due to a back injury that he continues to struggle with.

Prior to that problem, the Armenia international was absent from eight games due to a metatarsal injury.

The Standard report that Mkhitaryan will be assessed on Wednesday and is a doubt to play in a game that the Gunners simply have to win.

Unai Emery’s men lost 3-1 in France in the first leg last week, meaning they need to record a 2-0 victory, at least, to have any hope of qualifying for the quarter-finals.

Mkhitaryan has played in six Europa League games thus far this season, providing two assists in total. In all competitions, meanwhile, he’s netted six times in 2018/19.

Risk him

If Mkhitaryan is fit enough to move freely, at least from the outset, this may be a risk that Emery has to take.

Arsenal were risible in France, playing absolutely terribly to leave their Europa League hopes hanging by a thread.

Mkhitaryan may not have averted the disaster but he could well be vital to the club fighting their way back into the tie.

At the Emirates Stadium, the Gunners will be expected to win and Mkhitaryan has been in the kind of form that could swing the game.

Prior to his injury, he scored once and laid on an assist in the 2-0 win over Southampton, as well as scoring once and providing two assists in the 5-1 thumping of AFC Bournemouth.

Emery may not be able to ignore him.