Arsenal may be walking a tight rope to the final of the UEFA Europa League after playing a 1-1 draw with Atletico Madrid in the first leg semifinal game on Thursday.

Antoine Griezmann rescues a draw for the visitors with eight minutes remaining after Alexandre Lacazette's 61st minute opener.

Atletico Madrid, reduced to ten men after nine minutes, had barely been able to get out of their half for much of the game.

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Arsene Wenger, who was playing his last UEFA game at the Emirates, saw his boys controll the game for most of the 90 minutes, but find it hard to score despite Atletico right-back Sime Vrsaljko haphazardly collecting two yellow cards inside the opening 10 minutes.

The Spanish club managed to hold out until the 61st-minute, when Lacazette expertly directed Jack Wilshere's cross beyond Jan Oblak.

An ever-alert Griezmann preyed upon shoddy work from Arsenal centre-back Laurent Koscielny to bear down on goal, find the roof of the net and entirely alter the complexion of an absorbing tie.

The return leg will be played in seven days’ time, and Arsenal will need to beat Atletico Madrid if they want to play in the final.

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