Gunners fly in Austrians for not so ‘top secret’ friendly

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According to reports in Austria, local Bundesliga side LASK Linz will fly to London this week for a behind-closed-doors friendly with Arsenal at London Colney.

Unai Emery has arranged Thursday’s match as part of his side’s preparations for next week’s Europa League final with Chelsea in Baku.

It’s not the first time the Spaniard has used friendly fixtures to hone his squad. Crawley Town were invited to the training ground before the season started and we had a run out against Crystal Palace between our opening day defeat to Manchester City and the loss at Stamford Bridge.

Towards the end of the season, Emery also took the players to Dubai for a warm-weather training camp that also included a match with Al-Nasr.

LASK were second behind Red Bull Salzburg in the Austrian Bundesliga and are apparently known for their high-pressing game. It sounds as though we might be chartering a jet for our guests.

Here’s hoping it proves a useful exercise and not one that causes any injuries. Chelsea flew to the USA after their final Premier League game of the season and subsequently lost Ruben Loftus Cheek to a ruptured Achilles as they beat New England Revolution 3-0.

Both the Gunners and the Blues are expected to travel to Baku early next week before the final on Wednesday, 29 May.

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Cheers to @FabianZerche for the heads up

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Wojerwabbit
Wojerwabbit

Could possibly be a way of testing Welbeck’s match fitness? He’d be a massive boost if fit and ready.

IamaGoober

Fuck me, how class would that be? Danny Welbeck scoring in the final in his last ever Arsenal game.

wojerwabbit
wojerwabbit

I’m getting dangerously optimistic when I already know better, mate 🙁

HansRott
HansRott

This is a one-off game where optimism of any variety counts for little.

For them it’s just another bought-for trophy.

For us it’s much, much more – a bigger transfer pot, better recruitment incentives, a return to the high table – going out on a Thursday.

This could well be our most important game for years – both past and future.

Floppy Gloves
Floppy Gloves

Anyone else ready to run through a wall for this guy? COYG

Edgar Poureshagh
Edgar Poureshagh

No time for sentimentality. Put the best team on the pitch you can, while honoring commitments. #geterdone

Thehustler
Thehustler

Wasn’t you questioning Chelsea having a friendly game before the final?

rpsport
rpsport

Do LASK have someone like Hazard, so that our backline could obtain some practice in having rings run around them?