Good morning, TSFers. It’s a crappy weather Tuesday here in D.C., but my mood is lifted by Arsenal playing again this afternoon. I know that in the long run the shorter breaks between games make it tougher on the players, but selfishly, it’s much better to have Arsenal playing every 4-6 days instead of every 7-9. That’s part of what was so unpleasant about last season without European competition — it felt like forever between matches.
Thankfully, Arsenal have avoided that issue next season. The Gunners have clinched a Champions League spot and ensured that we’ll have midweek matches. There’s still the unresolved question of which draw pot Arsenal will occupy for the CL. It’s looking like it will be Pot 2, but Pot 3 is still a slight possibility. Arsenal being in Pot 3 would make for a really difficult group for the four teams drawn together. If the math works out that the Gunners end up in Pot 3, I’d wager they’d be the best team in the pot by a fairly significant margin.
I hope y’all had the chance to catch some of the women’s CL semifinal second leg yesterday. Even though the Gunners lost on a 117th minute goal, it was an incredible match. The injury-depleted Arsenal side, who looked to have suffered another ACL injury to Laura Weinroither, gave every ounce they had. The sellout Emirates crowd was in great voice the entire match. It was really cool to see. Compare the 60K spectators with the 1K at a CL match at the Emirates a decade ago. Women’s football is here and it’s great.