Saturday, October 1, 2022

Arteta talks rotation as Europa League schedule is confirmed

The kick-off times for Arsenal’s Europa League group stage fixtures have now been confirmed.

As we mentioned yesterday, after a relatively kind start to the season things get very hectic for Mikel Arteta’s side with five games taking place in September followed by nine in October. A further four games are set for November before the mid-season break for the World Cup.

While our Dutch, Norwegian and Swiss opponents shouldn’t be underestimated, we can at least be thankful that we’re not being sent to the edges of the continent during this period.


8 September
FC Zurich vs Arsenal
5.45pm (BST)

15 September
Arsenal vs PSV Eindhoven
8pm (BST)

6 October
Arsenal vs Bodo/Glimt
8pm (BST)

13 October
Bodo Glimt vs Arsenal
5.45pm (BST)

27 October
PSV Eindhoven vs Arsenal
5.45pm (BST)

3 November
Arsenal vs FC Zurich
8pm (GMT)

Mikel Arteta is pumped for the return of continental action to the carpet. Ahead of the match with Fulham, he said: “We missed it last year so much: those nights at the Emirates, the atmosphere, playing against European teams. The preparation is very different, and it’s great.

“We have to go for every competition that we are present in, and try to win it. We’ll go step by step and start to prepare for the competition in the best possible way. There are some good examples around of teams who have won the competition in the last few years.”

The Spaniard is also acutely aware of the impending need to rotate his squad.

“We have to maintain the level of performance we are at right now and the demand will be to do it every three days, which is what you are hoping for when you are at this club,” he added.

“Rotation depends on the level of the opposition, the state of our squad and where everybody is. Let’s take it game by game, see how the fitness of the team is and we’ll make the best possible decisions.

“Does rotation mean we rotate two players, three or 10? You have to weigh up the amount of minutes they have spent together [on the pitch] and find a strategy to get the best out of the team and get the right balance without dropping the level of performance. You need to win today and play a team who is going to get you there.”

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That’s a must. Otherwise we are prone to injuries. The world cup is a tricky time this year. It can result in some fatigue and injuries to the players.

Nainsley Aitland Miles

We’re in a strong position rotation wise. Our bench was incredibly strong last week and that’s without room for Cedric and Marquinhos.

On a side note I wonder if there’s a secret injury in the squad at the moment. Marquinhos didn’t play for the U21’s last night which possibly points to a place on the bench today. Just a random observation.


Or because Pepe has gone, he’s been promoted to the bench as his replacement

Pepe wasn’t on the bench last week. Vieira took his place.

Boy Bastin

Yes, it certainly looks good – clearly better than for some time now – but the squad as a whole hasn’t been tested yet. We’ll see how well it copes in “real life” soon. As we can see, the games will come thick and fast and the (mainly now) young players across the squad will be under a great deal of pressure, which they haven’t been so far this season. I’m keeping my fingers crossed.


Don’t you think the Marquinhos precausion might just have been done due to the fact that a winger, Nico, left on loan the other day?


I just hope it’s not the same players getting rotated and others play most games. I think Saka for his form and fitness needs to be rested. Will MA trust Marquinhos? Martinelli down the right? Does he trust Sambi enough to give Partey/Xhaka a blow? He may prefer Elneny there, but why not invest minutes in Sambi, he’s our future! I still think it’s MA’s biggest blind spot, rotating and using subs.


Rumours going around that Thomas isn’t the squad today


For sur he isn’t the squad, he’ll have 10 high quality team mates all around him on the pitch 😜

Nainsley Aitland Miles




If I’ve read the rules correctly, there’s a preliminary knockout round of 16 in February consisting of the 8 teams that finish runners up in their Europa group + the 8 Champions League knockouts.

So the 8 winners of the Europa groups will advance directly to the ‘real’ Round of 16, which starts in March.

Win your group, you have two fixtures less in your calendar.

Finish second, at least there’s additional matchday and TV revenue from 2 extra fixtures. And an extra 2 games for Elneny.


Zactly, though u would imagine that prize money for getting straight through should compensate for the additional revenue from the extra games (I don’t know this for sure though). Couple that with the fact that all teams in the play offs will be reasonably strong, that’s players will be coming out of a winter of crazy football and then 2 less games is by far the more attractive choice.

Boy Bastin

That’s what a squad is for after all. Having said that, this is quite a new look squad in many respects so nobody knows yet how they’ll cope – not only with the hectic schedule of PL and EL games (in October, in particular), but with injuries and probably the odd suspension that we’re bound to pick up along the way anyway. All successful teams, or teams like us who aspire to be successful, just have to manage these problems. We’ll see if we can quite soon.


Really looking forward to two games a week and how Arteta will rest and rotate, it’ll be a test but that’s what teams who are or who want to be successful have to deal with and we’ll be fine, we have options in almost every position and the players we have to come in will keep the level high. I don’t worry about our team or our players because they’re quality I just worry about referees.


I think we might see some on Wednesday. Viera, Smith-Rowe, Nketiah and possibly the two FB’s to come in.

Nainsley Aitland Miles

No chance Mikel rotates 5 players for a Premier League game.


I’m still a bit concerned about the engine room if Partey is injured or has to be omitted (let’s not even go there). I know I’m repeating myself like a fat well fed Dickensian tory, but we really could do a lot worse than getting this Tielemans lad in. I know the rumours of the Wolves guy as an alternative right wing option/ back up for Saka are exciting. I just can’t help but feel that we might get caught out again with Partey. It would be beyond tragic to have the apple cart being upset again for one of… Read more »

Nainsley Aitland Miles

He’s being linked with Liverpool now ever since Klopp said Liverpool may sign a midfielder. There would be outrage around here if that happened.

Forget about it

Youri Tielemans does not play that position at Leicester – Ndidi does. Just saying. And I rate Tielemans and he would be a great addition, but we need a real DM to compete directly with Partey. Share the load if you will.

Forget about it

Youri Tielemans is not the DM at Leistecter though. Ndidi is. It’s not that I don’t rate Tielemans and I think he would be a fantastic addition but we need a like for like in Partey’s absence. Ndidi is also very good. I think the DM of the season was Nørgaard at Brentford. Why not him or Rice! 😀


Bodo Glimt sounds like a Star Wars character.
Still, you have to show them respect and to win this competition would be another piece of silverware and a route into CL football…


Bodo is unfortunately a legit German first name… then again, so is Hans Solo.

Forget about it

Please – how does the filter work on this site. Why can’t I post innocuous, relevant comments??

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