Alexis Sanchez helped 10-man Arsenal to a 3-1 win over Everton but Arsene Wenger’s side missed out on Champions League qualification.
Arsenal needed to win on the final day and hope their rivals slipped up, and goals from Hector Bellerin, Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey ensured they held up their side of the bargain despite Laurent Koscielny’s early red card. Romelu Lukaku had made it 2-1 by scoring from the penalty spot.
But Liverpool beat Middlesbrough and Manchester City trounced Watford, meaning Wenger’s men finished fifth and failed to earn a place among Europe’s elite, ending a run of 20 consecutive top-four placings.
Arsenal’s misery was compounded by the sight of Sanchez limping off in the second half and Gabriel being carried on a stretcher. Both could now miss next weekend’s FA Cup final against Chelsea, along with the suspended Koscielny, who was sent off in the 14th minute for a lunge on Enner Valencia.
The rewards from both the Premier League and Europa League mean the financial hit of missing out on the Champions League is less damaging than it once was — but it remains to be seen how it sits with Arsenal’s players, Sanchez and Mesut Ozil in particular.