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Arsenal Women vs FC Zurich: Champions League preview

Arsenal Women look to make it two from two.

Arsenal Women Training Session Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Champions League football returns to the Emirates Stadium, as Arsenal Women look to make it two wins from two. Last week’s scintillating 5-1 win against Lyon puts Arsenal in a strong position entering match day two, as Lyon and Juventus play each other. That gives Arsenal the possibility of opening up a decent advantage over one of the two teams, but only if Arsenal take all 3 points against Zurich.

Zurich are Swiss champions, and came through the entire qualifying round. On match day one, they kept Juventus out for 70 minutes, before Juve scored two late goals. Zurich will likely come with a deep block with 10 behind the ball, and it’ll offer Arsenal a different test to the one that they had against Lyon and Liverpool, both of whom tried pressing Arsenal, but left space in behind.

Team news:

Neither Lia Wälti nor Laura Wienroither trained on Wednesday, though both should be on the bench. Vivianne Miedema has been a substitute in Arsenal’s last two matches, while Lina Hurtig, out with illness over the weekend, should return to the squad.

Player to watch:

It feels odd to say this, but Vivianne Miedema is currently not first choice in either of her two positions. This will work itself out—a week ago, it was unthinkable that Miedema would be dropped, and Frida Maanum has played exceptionally well—but Maanum deserves to keep playing in the #10 position, and Stina Blackstenius, while not prolific this season, runs the channels and fills the penalty box. With Zurich playing a deep block, though, Miedema might start as the #9, and Arsenal could utilize the forward movement of Maanum and Nobbs from midfield and Mead and Foord from wide with Miedema dropping off into a free role.

Predicted lineup (4-2-3-1): 1. Zinsberger; 16. Maritz, 3. Wubben-Moy, 7. Catley, 15. McCabe; 10. Little, 12. Maanum; 9. Mead, 8. Nobbs, 19. Foord; 11. Miedema
Substitutes: 18. Marckese, 40. Williams, 5. Beattie, 13. Wälti, 17. Hurtig, 23. Iwabuchi, 25. Blackstenius, 26. Wienroither, 59. Agyemang, 62. Reid

WHAT: Arsenal Women v FC Zurich, UEFA Women’s Champions League

WHERE: Emirates Stadium, London

WHEN: Thursday, October 27th 12:00 PM PDT | 3:00 PM EDT | 8:00 PM BST