Arsenal’s chances of winning the Europa League just got a lot harder!

It would appear that Arsenal will stop being the short favourite to win the Europa League after this weeks Champions League matches relegated some excellent teams into the secondary competition. The quality of the third-placed teams in the Qualifying Groups means that it will get progressively harder the further we go, and here is the final list of teams now entering the Europa League….

Group A – CSKA Moscow
Group B – Celtic
Group C – Atletico Madrid
Group D – Sporting Lisbon
Group E – Spartak Moscow
Group F – Napoli
Group G – RB Leipzig
Group H – Borussia Dortmund

I would say that, other than Celtic, these are all teams that can make life hard for the Gunners, especially Athletico Madrid, Dortmund and Napoli who are traditional big hitters.

When you consider some of the teams that are already in the draw like AC Milan, Atalanta, Lyon, Lazio and Zenit, it would appear that this years knockout stages are going to be a lot more interesting than usual.

It is little surprise that Atletico Madrid are now the new favourites @ 7/2 after finishing third behind Roma and Chelsea in their Group, but currently Arsenal are still quite low priced at around 11/2. But if Wenger continues to only play his reserves in all the games then surely we should be closer to 100/1….

Should Wenger now switch priority to trying to win the Europa League and play his very best side from now on?



  1. Nothing changed says:

    Wenger is not exactly known for his managerial skills when it comes to European football. To me winning the Europa league was always a long shot.

    Having said that I think Wenger has had the right approach in rotating for the Europa league. We can play more and more of our first teamers as we progress.

    We always knew that the teams dropping down from the CL could be formidable having said that we are capable of beating any of them IMO.

    The question is are we capable of showing up for every opponent or are we going to have a typical Arsenal moment by underestimating one of our opponents or switching off for 15 minutes allowing 2 or 3 goals we won’t be able to overcome? I am more worried about our ability to show up than our capability to beat any of those teams.

    We were capable of beat Man U IMO but we are not able to show up for more than 3 games in a row in PL so we got taken out inside 14 minutes by Man U and thus were not able to beat them.

    We don’t seem to have the winning mentality that automatically fights and concentrates every minute of every game.

    1. Sukhjot Gunner says:

      Just because we are capable of beating every club in the world does not mean that we will especially if wenger plays our kids against the strongest 11’s of these european heavyweights. Even Mourinho for all his ego and stuff realised that he had to give more priority to the europa than the epl towards the latter stages. I agree we can slowly start to increase the no of first team stars involved progressively,but if(may lord prove me wrong)we are drawn against atm or bvb the round of 32 itself,then we need to play the premier league side to stand any chance of progressing….

      1. If we are drawn against Atletico, BvB or Napoli we might as well forget about Europa. We struggle to beat any sort of big team now imagine trying to do so with our 2nd string team and yes, Wenger will play our 2nd string team as he has relentlessly insisted time and again europa league is not a priority for him and he actually disapproves of champions league qualification through the “backdoor” that europa league winning provides. I fear we have nothing more than 4th spot scramble and the FA cup to look forward to yet again this year.

        1. Nothing changed says:

          If we don’t play our best players against these teams we have little chance, if we play our best players we have little excuse not to win.

          The reality is sadly that we won’t play our best players or win.

      2. Nothing changed says:

        Completely agree. We hardly ever play up to our capabilities. It will be Wenger’s responsibility to field a team that will win. he has no excuses IMO.

        I never blamed him for losing to Barca even if I was disappointed sometimes in our effort but he can’t have a valid reason not to beat a Dortmund or Atletico IMO.

  2. Sukhjot Gunner says:

    Just when I thought we could have some joy winning a european trophy,here come BVB,NAPOLI and ATM. I wonder why does this happen to us always ???? First in the champions league round of 16 and now in the europa league. Nevertheless,I still feel that if we play a strong enough side we still have a great chance of winning it. I hope wenger does not take it as MICKEY MOUSE CUP VERSION-2 and keep playing the kids coz we may be really embarrassed in the knockout stages in europe,especially against the likes of the above mentioned teams and a.c.milan,lazio etc…who are in a descent form in this competition so far…

    1. Mobella says:

      If those teams you mentioned were any good, they should have qualified from their group. You lot are just acting like you are Nostradamus. When we are knocked out is the time to talk not now.

      1. Sue says:

        You can’t blame us for talking like that.. every season we have high expectations, for us to bow out at the same stage after a thrashing! Cut us some slack!!

  3. gotanidea says:

    I am sure Wenger would use his best team when the difficulty gets higher. But when facing the likes of Atletico Madrid, Dortmund, Napoli and Leipzig, the current Arsenal would have a big chance of getting eliminated.

    That is why the Premier League would still be Arsenal’s biggest chance to go back to the Champions League. They do not need to be the champion, but reaching the 4th position will give them the ticket.

    If they do not strengthen in January, they might as well forget about the 4th position.

    1. Sukhjot Gunner says:


    2. Sukhjot Gunner says:

      You just modified my comment in a more generous way but you nailed it about how wenger needs to go about his business in the rest of the season

    3. Nothing changed says:

      I disagree, we should be able to beat these teams, they all struggle this season.

      Being Arsenal we will probably get eliminated against a lesser team but if we manage to play to our potential we can beat any team left in the competition. As I said before we fail to play to our potential too often.

  4. Sue says:

    That is just our luck!! After tonight he’s going to have to play our strongest team… have to go for it as the PL is long gone

    1. Sue says:

      We’ll find out on Monday who we’re playing

  5. Atid says:

    Well for me should now Park the Europa league, we won’t play in it again for more than two months. The priority should be trying to get an unbeaten run going in the league. The Europa League team will be able to focus on the Carabao Cup and Fa Cup for a couple of months. Then during January Wengers job should be deciding who leaves and who remains, so that we can give our squad the best chance possible on 4 fronts.

  6. Dreams dreams dreams. Does Arsenal have real first team? All are average who cannot command first team jerseys in other big clubs. We better face the EPL fourth place Finnish for a chance next year. And Wenger does good business on the transfer window

  7. Anko says:

    I know we will still face harder challenges and hence I pay Wenger do not think this young and inexperienced players will go all the way, because he has a tendency to do that and that will not take us anywhere close to winning the competition. I am just very glad no English club is amongst them, it would have become even harder.

  8. Anko says:


  9. McLovin says:

    It has come down to us fearing the likes of Atletico and Dortmund when we used to challenge Barcelona.

    How low can Wenger sink this club…

    1. Nothing changed says:

      True, yet I don’t fear them as much as our own mentality.

    2. ThirdManJW says:

      Since when were Arsenal ever a challenge for Barcelona?

      1. Mitch Connor says:

        Champions League final. We lost by 1 goal and we had 10 men on the field

        1. ThirdManJW says:

          One win in seven isn’t much of a challenge. That one win ended up being pointless as well, because they still knocked us out.

  10. jon fox says:

    Wenger will now be forced into seeing what happens in the Prem between now and the first knockout match, as yet opponent unknown. It is a balance between trying genuinely to make top four in PREM AND PUTTING OUT STRONGEST POSSIBLE TEAM IN EUROPA , WHILST NOT OVERPLAYING KEY PREM PLAYERS IN EUROPA BUT HAVING ENOUGH DEPTH TO WIN IF UP AGAINST A BETTER TEAM, THAN SO FAR, WHICH WILL OBVIOUSLY HAPPEN AT SOME STAGE. We do have, on paper, a decent chance of winning Europa IF he plays very strong elevens to start. Cross one bridge at a time though; first is the Prem and then see where we are at next Europa match. He will however get rightly slaughtered if he puts out an unnecessarily weak team and we go out. I say IF.

  11. mario says:

    Rubbish, I know Wenger very well, he knows Europa is one of the trophies that Can take him to UCL next season , I knew very well he is waiting for The last group stage Match of UCL for him to know the third place teams that will join Europa now he Have seen it I know very well he Will play our first team players now on, look at Manchester United last season They just focus only on eroupa and they made it, so As for Wenger with His way of decisions I think he will start playing our first team playerS if he really want to have power over arsenal Baord Next season because they have lost a huge amount of money this Season because of no champions league place, I think if he fails next season he will see the door off from his inheritance sit.

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