Following yesterday’s draw, Arsenal’s schedule people sat with UEFA’s schedule people and hashed out when the newly-drawn teams would actually play games. Which didn’t happen because that’s not how it works, but it’s the Friday before a three day weekend and I don’t want to think.
Anyway, the actual schedule for the Europa League group stage has been released, and here it is:
Frankfurt vs Arsenal
19 September 9.55AM PT/12.55PM ET
Arsenal vs Standard Liege
3 October 12PM PT/3PM ET
Arsenal vs Vitoria
24 October 12PM PT/3 PM ET
Vitoria vs Arsenal
6 November 7.50AM PT/10.50AM ET*
Arsenal vs Frankfurt
28 November 12PM PT/3PM ET
Standard Liege vs Arsenal
12 December 9.55AM PT/12.55PM ET
Notice anything odd there? The game at Vitoria is on Wednesday, not on Thursday, and at the very odd hour of 3.50PM Portuguese time. With Porto and Braga also playing in the Europa League, Portuguese officials decided that three geographically close teams playing on the same day at the same time was too much of a resource drain, so Vitoria is playing all their group stage games on Wednesdays this season. Just like the grownup league!
Anyway, that’s your lot for the group stages this season. Three weeks away!