Arsenal open their Europa League campaign with a trip to Vienna to take on Rapid Wien. The Austrian side finished second in their domestic league last season and went out of the Champions League to Gent in the qualifying rounds. They’re currently 2nd in the table at 3-1-0 with 10 goals for and only 3 against.
For the first time at an Arsenal match since March, there will be fans inside the stadium in Vienna today. I doubt it will have much of an effect on the game itself, but it will be a brief curiosity for TV viewers.
Arsenal will be without the services of Dani Ceballos and Willian, who are both carrying minor injuries. The pair will be assessed ahead of Sunday’s match against Leicester. Rob Holding is set to miss 3-4 weeks with a hamstring problem. Pablo Mari, Calum Chambers, and Gabriel Martinelli are still out, but Shkodran Mustafi is back in full training and available for selection.
I expect Mikel Arteta to deploy something close to a full strength lineup. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Mustafi get the start. In his press conference, Arteta basically said that Thomas Partey would be starting today. As for the rest of the lineup, I’m guessing he names a few more first-choice players than Nathan predicted. Arsenal are going to take the Europa League seriously this season, and today’s fixture looks to be the toughest of the group stage.
Arsenal - Leno, David Luiz, Gabriel, Kolasinac, Cedric, Elneny, Partey, Saka, Pepe, Lacazette, Nketiah
Rapid Wien - Strebinger, Barac, Ritzmaier, Fountas, Grahovac, Hofmann, Stojkovic, Kara, Ullmann, Arase, Ljubicic
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