Giroud hat-trick helps Chelsea ease into Europa quarters

Arsenal's Pierre Emerick Aubameyang right celebrates after scoring his side's third goal during the Europa League round of 16 2nd leg soccer match between Arsenal and Rennes at the Emirates stadium in London Thursday March 1

Giroud hat-trick helps Chelsea ease into Europa quarters

Chelsea were handed a more favourable draw, with the Premier League side facing Slavia Prague, who knocked out five-time Europa League winners Sevilla in the round of 16.

Despite not getting on the scoresheet, Sarri was impressed with Loftus-Cheek's contribution and thinks he has all the attributes to be one of the very best on the continent. "He is improving in the last month", said the ex-Napoli boss.

It's not a serious problem, so he should be able to play, but I don't know yet. I'm very happy he was able to play for 90 minutes.

"His potential as a player is very, very, high", he said.

Hudson-Odoi also continued his fine run in the competition with a fourth goal in Europe this season and while Walker thinks he will only get better, Giroud could act as the flawless role-model for him.

The Italians are now second in Serie A to Juventus and have already shown their pedigree this season by beating Liverpool and drawing twice against Paris Saint-Germain in this season's Champions League group stages.

"Recently, every time he has been on the pitch, he has played really very well", he later told a media conference.

"It's always very hard when you lose the first game", the 25-year-old defender said after Arsenal sent Rennes packing from the Europa League. "I'm happy for him, but he has to keep the feet on the ground because he can improve more".

Napoli's passage was rather less straightforward, advancing 4-3 on aggregate against RB Salzburg after falling to a 3-1 defeat in Austria, but both clubs remain on course to fight for the Europa League trophy in Baku on May 29.

"I prefer to face them in the final", he added.

"We didn't put ourselves in a good position at the end of that first leg".

The victor of the quarter-final between Napoli and Arsenal will certainly be favourite to make the final, both of which are capable of causing a serious threat to the Blues.

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