The North London outfit play in Europe’s second tier for the first time in 16 years and will want to make the best possible impression
Arsenal lock horns with FC Cologne in Group H of the Uefa Europa League at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday night.
The Gunners made it into Europe’s second tier tourney by finishing fifth last season. They haven’t started the new campaign in convincing fashion but did defeat Bournemouth 3-0 at the weekend to awaken the team spirit. They are ( 1.45 ) with LionsBet to win this tie.
The Billy Goats qualified for the competition by finishing fifth in the German Bundesliga last term. Their start to the 2017/2018 campaign has been terrible as they’ve lost their three games so far and are rock bottom of the log. They are thus underdogs here at ( 6.25 ).
A draw is available at odds of ( 4.35 ) with the same firm.
This is Arsenal’s first appearance in the Europa League since the 2000/2001 season when they reached the Uefa Cup final only to lose 4-1 on penalties to Galatasaray, with the game ending 0-0 after extra time.
The scenario is now different for Arsene Wenger’s side and are thus ( 1.09 ) for a win or draw in North London at the end of 90 minutes.
Cologne’s last victory over an English side in this competition was against Queens Park Rangers all the way back in 1976 which ended 2-1. Considering their current struggles in the Bundesliga, punters can expect to see lots of goals and a pick of two or more at ( 1.60 ) won’t be a bad selection.
The Billy Goats will be the 64th team Wenger has faced in Europe. He has recorded at least a win against 56 of the previous 63 sides. The Frenchman’s team look good to win either half at odds of ( 1.25 ) with LionsBet .
With Alexandre Lacazette rested for this clash, it is most likely that Olivier Giroud will get the nod to start upfront. The former Montpellier man has decided to remain at the Emirates despite been starved of sufficient game time.
Giroud is just one goal away from reaching a century for Arsenal bookies tip him to achieve it on Thursday night by scoring anytime at odds of ( 1.45 ).