Arsenal FC vs Rennes Injury Report: Bellerin, Welbeck, Holding, Siliki

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Arsenal received a very favorable draw for their UEFA Europa League round of 16 tie in Rennes, a side who currently sit 10th in Ligue 1. The Gunners, along with arch-rivals Chelsea, remain as good a bet as any to win the whole tournament, and they commence their quest Thursday night at a riverside pitch Brittany.

The Gunners will still be without their trio of long term injury absentees: Hector Bellerin, Danny Welbeck and Rob Holding. The bigger absence for manager Unai Emery to be concerned with though is striker Alexandre Lacazette, who will be serving a suspension in this one.

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Rennes certainly have plenty of injuries to be concerned with, for the first leg in this two-legged tie, most notably striker Jordan Siebatcheu and midfielder James Lea Siliki. This will be the tenth time that Arsenal have faced a French side in Euro competition, and the Gunners have vanquished all of the previous nine.

Arsenal have also never lost an away game against a French side, with eight wins and five draws. This probably doesn’t bode so well for Rennes, now does it?

Arsenal FC at Rennes UEL Round of 16 Leg 1/2 FYIs

Kickoff: Thursday, March 7, 5:55pm, Stade de la Route de Lorient

Arsenal FC Starting XI Prediction: go to this link

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Odds via Odds Checker: Arsenal 13/12, Draw 23/10, Rennes 27/10

Odds via Bet365 to win UEL tournament following round of 16 draw: Chelsea 7/2, Napoli 9/2, Arsenal 9/2, Sevilla 11/2, Inter 10/1, Valencia 9/1, Benfica 16/1, Salzburg 25/1

Prediction: Arsenal 3, Rennes 0

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, regularly appears as a guest pundit on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

He also contributes sociopolitical essays to Chicago NowFollow him on Twitter and Instagram. The content of his cat’s Instagram account is unquestionably superior to his.

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