Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang predicted that a recurrence of a previous two-legged clash could come true, when he failed to score with three clear-cut chances for Borussia Dortmund in the first leg, before taking his chances in the next.
The Gabon international missed a penalty in Portugal back in 2017, as well as missing two more clear chances as his side went back to Germany trailing 1-0.
He recalls calling his family after he was haunted by his performance, and made up for his failures by scoring an emphatic hat-trick to fire his side into the next round as his side saw off Benfica 4-0 back in Dortmund.
He told the Arsenal programme ahead of the clash with Benfica (via the Metro): “It was in the Champions League knockout stages, and I had a bad game in the first leg. I didn’t just miss a penalty, I missed all of my chances that first game.
“The whole way through the game, I was missing a lot of chances. I remember I had three clear opportunities to score and the penalty as well.
“Ederson was actually the Benfica goalkeeper at that time and I remember that I came back into the dressing room afterwards and I was really upset. Honestly, I think I cried a little bit about my performance and when I went back to Dortmund on the plane. Just before we flew I called my family to speak about the game.
“I said to them that I’m going to do everything to try to qualify my team in the second leg and I will do it for you, I promise. And then, in the end, I scored three goals at home in the second leg to send us through.
“I think in Dortmund, when you play at home in the second leg it’s really different and you can change everything in that environment because the fans are unbelievable and they give you this incredible power.
“I hope something similar can happen tonight. I missed a couple of chances in the first leg last week as well. I should have scored and that would have put us in a stronger position for this game. But we have another 90 minutes to play tonight and get the job done.”
PEA did just that. Aubameyang scored with two of his three chances on the night to fire our side into the next round of the competition, where we will now face Olympiacos, the same team who knocked us out of the Europa last season.