Arsenal draw Olympiakos in Europa League last 32

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Arsenal will face Olympiakos in the first knockout round of the Europa League.

We have a mixed record against the Greeks who we’ve faced in the Champions League on four separate occasions – 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2015. We’ve won all four home games and lost all four away in Athens.

The Gunners secured seeded status in the draw after finishing top of Group F on Thursday courtesy of a 2-2 draw away at Standard Liege.

Matches will be played on 20 February in Athens and 27 February at the Emirates; both 8pm kick-offs (UK time).

Having been to the semi-finals in 2018 and the final last season, we’ll be hoping to go one better this year.

Having been cut adrift of the Champions League places on the domestic front, this competition represents our best bet of sneaking our way back to Europe’s top table.

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Dr Hubab
Dr Hubab

The glamour tie. That’ll draw the crowds back in.

Crash Fistfight
Crash Fistfight

Can someone explain how as a group winner we’re able to draw one of the teams to drop down from the CL? What advantage is that supposed to be?

Richie

Yes; 8 teams were relegated from the Champions League; the four with the best record in their CL group were seeded, the four with the worst record were unseeded.

Ash
Ash

Best 4 out of 8 dropped teams are put in seeded category and bottom 4 are put in unseeded category for this draw

The Voice of the Noise
The Voice of the Noise

This is the EL, mate, none of this makes any sense.
Kind of like how the final last year was played in a country one of our players couldn’t enter out of fear for his life.

DaDude
DaDude

The advantage of the group winner is that they cannot be drawn against another group winner. The CL dropouts were split into 4 “seeded” = stronger teams and 4 “unseeded” = supposedly weaker teams. Arsenal could have only gotten the 4 unseeded teams from the CL. However, I agree with you that on paper some of the EL group winners are certainly weaker than the unseeded CL dropouts.

Maybe a fairer method would be that in this round group winners strictly play against runner-up teams and the CL dropouts only play among themselves.

Crash Fistfight
Crash Fistfight

Seems a much fairer way to do it.

PeteyB
PeteyB

Aye, but then by default 4 potentially ‘bigger’ CL teams will be out of the EL and with them will go views and sponsor money. Powers that be will always put revenue ahead of what is fair.

para
para

CL dropouts should have NO place in the Europa competition.

Sheffield Gooner
Sheffield Gooner

Looks like the end of the road is in sight…

cagooner
cagooner

End of the road for our manager search, or end of the road for our long run in the top league? haha #COYG.

Little Mozart
Little Mozart

We lost at home in 2015 and won away thanks to a Giroud hat-trick

gooner
gooner

but don Vito Mannone trying out an air kick to stop a shot in his box will always be my best memory. we even had Tom Cruise at left back in that game

Spanish Gooner
Spanish Gooner

Joel Campbell really made me believe that game

PeteyB
PeteyB

…that pass… I thought that was it too, Joel Campbell had arrived.

The Voice of the Noise
The Voice of the Noise

Almost Bergkamp-esque!

jon

Olympiacos is an ok draw, although they’ll come in with all the belief and fighting spirit Arsenal currently lack. I believe we’ll go through, but that our EL stops in the next round, which might be our last international games for at least a year and a half.

Richie

Is there no Emirates Cup in 2020?!

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner
Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

Guys, as I have all Olympiacos games in the CL, I can tell you that the 4 points they accumulated were not the real picture. They battered Spurs in the first game which ended 2-2 and played very well against Bayern as well. If they play on the same level it’s going to be a very difficult tie…

FissionMailed
FissionMailed

To be fair, that was Spurs during their worst run of form in years and Bayern around the time Kovacs got sacked.

Still tough opposition, Olympiacos haven’t lost in the Greek league and only conceeded 5 all season. SLG is a poor league but they’re looking solid… but worth noting that both of those teams weren’t in a good place when they played Olympiacos and they both still qualified out of their CL group.

Bergkamp2Wright
Bergkamp2Wright

At least there’ll be some atmosphere in the Emirates. From their fans I mean.

Apangu Iddi Amin
Apangu Iddi Amin

Weather we like it or not we have to face better teams in order to improve our game other wise how shall we know the level of our game when we dont play strong teams.

Bergkamp2Wright
Bergkamp2Wright

They’re not a good team mate, but probably better then us.

SayUncle

Depends on the weather…

Bob
Bob

Olympiacos is better they will win 4 to 2 on Aggregate

santori
santori

I think the league is gone for us. Its a salvage job from now on to scramble for 5th or 6th at best till end of season.

BUT we are still in a decent shout in Europa.

Teams we should be concern with Inter, United prob Wolves although in current form, anyone can beat us.

Olympiakos should on paper be a decent draw for us. We went there some seasons past with Wenger needing result to stay in contention in CL with a midfield pinned together by Ramsey and Flamini that delivered a must win in hostile environment and under massive pressure.

Hopefully, the team in current incarnation can be motivated to work hard rather than take things for granted.

There is still sufficient talent in the squad (despite injuries) to feel we are making poor excuses and not performing to potential (certainly senior players)

There is a distinct lack of discipline and structure which unfortunately everybody’s friend Freddy is not going to be able to enforce.

Nor do I think Arteta will perform much better in this regard.

What we need is for players like Auba, Ozil, Pepe to do their work, bust the gut to come back to help the midfield. Acres of space around the mids regardless whether it is Torreira and Guendouzi or Granit.

These players will work for about 15-20 minutes at best and then their effort invariably drops which is why you see us good only for spells of that duration in either half.

As I mentioned, we need a manger with the clout and balls to haul players off (Like Duncan Fergusson did with Keane) should their off ball work drop.

I don’t see that in Freddy and certainly not in Arteta who has not had direct experience man managing.

Mintoes
Mintoes

Isn’t that exactly what Freddie did with Ozil yesterday?Yanked him after another Ozil no show!

Gutbukkit Deffrolla
Gutbukkit Deffrolla

I don’t care who we get in as coach, we’re never making 5th or 6th this season. We need somebody to keep us up. That’s our level now.

It’s not just two or three players that are being lazy. Its an entire squad who no longer believe they can win. Any small hope they might have had after West Ham is surely gone now.

We’re utterly useless against top 4 teams, hopeless against 5th to 6th teams, horrible against mid-table teams, and have needed luck to draw against the teams in the relegation places. We cannot compete at Premier League level any more.

I fear the FA Cup draw, because if we get a non-league or lower league team they aren’t going to fear us. They’ll believe they have a great chance to take our scalp. They’d be right too.

Teryima Adi
Teryima Adi

We are not going anywhere with our defence.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla
Gutbukkit Deffrolla

First thing we need to do is formally introduce our defenders to our midfielders so that they can learn to be comfortable in each others’ presence and won’t mind mingling together on the football pitch.