Arteta explains benching Auba

English Premier League

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has explained why Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang started on the bench in their UEFA Europa League tie on Thursday.

The Gabon international was surprisingly left out of the starting line-up to face Slavia Praha in the first leg of their quarter-final.

Aubameyang was only introduced in the 78th minute as the two sides went on play to a 1-1 draw, with the visitors netting a late equaliser.

“It was a big decision to leave some players out but we decided to play the team who had the best chance at the start of the game, and as well have some key players there to change the game when we need it,” Arteta told the club website.

“I think when they came on they had a real impact, which was very necessary in this competition and they did what we expected them to do.”

He added, “Well I cannot talk with everybody individually every week, but we try to be transparent and communicate with the players as clearly as possible for them to understand the role that they have in the game.

"When he came on, he showed the right attitude and the right commitment.”

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