Dani Ceballos speaks out after mistake against Benfica and thanks Arsenal teammate for bailing him out

Dani Ceballos speaks out after mistake against Benfica and thanks Arsenal teammate
The Spaniard gifted Benfica the lead with a woeful back pass (Picture: Getty Images)

Arsenal midfielder Dani Ceballos has vowed to ‘learn’ from his mistake against Benfica in the Europa League and thanked teammate Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for bailing him out late on.

The Gunners trailed 3-2 on aggregate on Thursday night in the ‘home’ leg of their last 32 tie in Athens after Ceballos – who had given away the first-half free-kick from which Benfica netted their first goal – bizarrely under-hit a back pass that played Rafa clean through on goal to finish.

Arsenal rallied as time ran out, however, with Kieran Tierney drawing the side level – though they still would have gone out on ‘away’ goals – before Aubameyang nipped in at the back post with time running out to head the Gunners into the next round.

Dani Ceballos Arsenal FC v SL Benfica - UEFA Europa League Round Of 32 Leg Two
Ceballos’ error gave Rafa a free run at goal to put Benfica ahead (Picture: Getty)

Ceballos looked distraught when he was subbed off with Arsenal trailing in the match and was thrilled that his teammates managed to fight back and cancel out his mistake – and he has vowed not to let it happen again.

‘This is football and you can always learn and make up for your errors,’ wrote the midfielder on Twitter after the game.

‘Up to the next round! Thank goodness! Let’s go Gunners! Thanks Aubameyang.’

Manager Mikel Arteta was delighted that Ceballos’ mistake did not prove costly and praised the on-loan Real Madrid midfielder after the game.

‘I’m especially happy for Dani, he leads his profession like it’s the most important thing in his life,’ said the Arsenal boss.

‘When he made that mistake if it meant we were out of the competition it would have been tough. Someone like him deserves good things to happen to him.

‘But we gave them two goals. When you do that, you are going to be in trouble. After that, the reaction of the team gave me hope.’

Skipper Aubameyang, who missed a sitter at this stage of the competition last season, said of the win: ‘I think everyone is happy tonight and definitely I had this in my head.

‘But this is what gives me power every day. Take the error from the past and transform it to strength. Tonight I’m really happy that we won the game.

‘I think the team showed a lot of character and I think we deserved the win. It was a hard game but tonight really happy for all the team. What we showed tonight, I think it’s going to be an example for the future.’

MORE : Mikel Arteta defends Dani Ceballos after mistakes almost punish Arsenal in dramatic win over Benfica

MORE : ‘Why is he even there?!’ – Martin Keown rips apart Arsenal midfielder Dani Ceballos after Benfica scare

Follow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

For more stories like this, check our sport page.

No comments