Mikel Arteta gets the chance to set Europa League record straight (Opinion)

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has suffered defeat only once from his 10 fixtures in the Europa League thus far, and he will get the chance to correct that next month.

The Gunners will take on Olympiacos in the last 16 of the competition, the same team which eliminated our side from the Europa last season.

We won the opening leg against the Greek giants, a 1-0 win in Attica, only to come back to England for the second leg and fall apart. Olympiacos took the lead early into the second-half against the run of play, and our side simply couldn’t beat the goalkeeper.

We went into extra-time and took the lead in the tie once again thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, but Olympiacos once again punished our mistake by sealing the win on away goals at the death.

It was a painful defeat, and we will now be looking to avenge that when on March 11 when we travel to Greece again for the first leg, and while we will hope that Olympiacos can keep their record of being the only team to hold a win over Mikel Arteta as a boss, you wouldn’t expect Arsenal to take their opponents lightly.

The Gunners should be looking at their European chances as their priority after this favourable draw, and just three more opponents standing in their way should they eliminate Olympiacos in three weeks time.

Will Arsenal be looking back at last season’s fixture or will they be confident of stamping their authority on the tie?

Patrick

Tags Europa League mikel arteta Olympiacos

29 Comments

  1. Wyoming says:

    To be fair the Greek ‘Giants’ are minnows compared to Arsenal. Which is why our loss to them in the round of 32 last season was so horrific. Olympiacos should be a stroll in the park. In my opinion Arsenal and Spurs are now joint favourite to win the EL as all the other decent teams will qualify from their respective leagues any way. Only Spurs and Arsenal need to win the EL. Both will now prioritize the EL and a NLD final is possible depending on the draw of course. Talking of records either team may set the record for the lowest placed team in the Premier League to ever qualify for the Champions league along the way.

  2. gotanidea says:

    If we can get good results from Leicester and Burnley games, we’ll be more confident before travelling to Greece

    Smith-Rowe better starts as CAM in those two games, to build his confidence and if there’s no legal issue in benching Odegaard. It’ll be good to start Lacazette upfront as well

    1. GunnerDev says:

      I agree. Smith-rowe plays better in the center and as a result we play better.

      1. McLovin says:

        I would play

        ——— Auba
        Pepe – ESR – Saka

        In the next EL game

      2. gotanidea says:

        Unlike Ozil, Willian and Odegaard, Smith-Rowe is better in aerial duels and has more chemistry with Saka/ Nketiah/ Lacazette

        1. Alanball08 says:

          GAI
          why is ozil still in your mind
          Can you please move on with him

          1. gotanidea says:

            Just wanna give an example of some CAMs whose abilities are similar to Odegaard’s

        2. adajim says:

          i replied your post yesterday about why important a left footed CAM is, to balancing our attack.
          when we attack the right side is redundant because Auba shift to left alot creating an overburden there but now with ODE we have more attack players moving to right and creating something. i can point out 2 through balls from that side to auba , most notably in the first leg against benfica

          1. gotanidea says:

            I guess Odegaard drifted to the right for moving the ball faster to the other side, after we clogged the right flank with Bellerin, Saka and him. It didn’t work, but I hope it’d work next time if Arteta insists on starting Odegaard

        3. Joe. S says:

          What’s Nketien got to go with it? Are trying to depress me before the team’s even been picked.

  3. jon fox says:

    It is a good draw for us and the previous defeat to Olympiacos is irrelevant to the next time we play them. We are by far the better team and I fully expect to win this tie.

  4. Ackshay says:

    Its a tie we should be winning but it was kind of the same last year wasn’t it. still some teams in it but no one that we cannot beat on a good day.

  5. Emzy kazzy says:

    Who wants a NLD in the europa league final?

    1. Defund The Media says:

      I’d prefer Slavia Prague lol

    2. Ackshay says:

      Given what happens everytime we face fellow epl teams in europe i’d rather we not face them. Remember chelsea 2 seasons ago, we were favourites.

  6. Arsenal2win says:

    it’s time 2 get back our pound of flesh 4rm Olympiacos, but we should also know they won’t be sleeping. Spurs & United still remain our greatest obstacle should we scale thru this stage. Spurs most especially cuz JM hardly lost a final.

  7. AndersS says:

    Good draw, I think.

    1. AndersS says:

      Great draw, actually. Man U and Milan to face each other, and also a few other of the best teams left in the competion are up against each other.

  8. Reggie says:

    In comparison, this is an easy draw and we should go through, no excuses if we dont.

    1. ozziegunner says:

      👍

  9. Kev82 says:

    Nice draw and an opportunity to gain revenge from last year! Let’s hope we have an actual home game this time and not have to play Olympiacos in baku or something lol.

    1. Ackshay says:

      Apparently the final will be played on the moon

      1. Kev82 says:

        Haha yeah I read the champions league final is being played on Mars perseverance is up there laying the pitch 😆

  10. antonioro says:

    Revenge tastes better when served cold…

  11. S.J says:

    Olympiakos is not an easy draw. They are the leaders in Greece.

    Our squad is even better this season to face them.

    We should go pass them this time.

    1. jon fox says:

      YES, leaders in the “mighty” Greek league! What a terifying prospect to play the best team in that ahem, cough cough, “mighty” league!

      1. Phil says:

        Well Foxy- your love child Arteta managed to F*** it up last year against them. Or can you not remember back that far?

  12. Cruz29 says:

    I think we need smith back in the CAM

  13. Kobin says:

    We should get the job done in Greece. And come relax at home. AND no we are spurs are not favourites for EL. There is still Man Utd here, Ajax. Mr Emery’s Villlareal and the overlooked Slavia Prague. The fact is no team are underdogs. Underdogs bites!

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