While domestic football will still be on the mind of many football fans across Europe, the real story for the next six weeks or so is going to be the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The summer spectacular is going to bring millions of supporters together in unison, and while many will suffer disappointment, the tournament allows a lot of people to forget about their problems and focus on one of life’s greatest joys: football.
As we all know by now, Arsenal FC will take on CSKA Moscow in the UEFA Europa League quarter-finals. There are about a million storylines to unpack from this game alone, and moving forward, it seems as if many fans are divided when it comes to whether or not this is an ideal match-up for the Gunners.
Naturally, there are going to be reservations as well as positives with any kind of European draw, and because of that, we felt as if the easiest way to figure the whole thing out would be to create a list of pros and cons. Aren’t you lucky.
Arsenal Football Club will play CSKA Moscow in the quarter-finals of the UEFA Europa League, as revealed in the official draw which was made earlier today.
Arsene Wenger’s men will look to make a statement in the first leg when they host CSKA on April 5th, before travelling to the Russian capital seven nights later to decide which of the two teams will progress to the semi-finals of the competition.
The draw comes in the wake of renewed tension between the United Kingdom and Russia, but above that, many eyes will be on Wenger to see whether or not he can guide the Gunners into what would be their first appearance in the final four of a major European tournament in years.
Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere was a surprise introduction from the substitutes’ bench in England 1-1 draw with Russia on Saturday evening, replacing Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney in the 77th minute. England manager Roy Hodgson is desperately trying to give Wilshere as much game time as possible potentially to ensure he’s fully fit for the latter stages, pending England’s progression, but how did he fare against Russia?
Despite the troubling 18 months of persistent injury problems that kept hampering his career at Arsenal, Jack Wilshere will be offered a new deal to extend his stay at the Emirates, according to reports.
Jack Wilshere’s injury woes began in 2015 when this highly-rated midfielder picked up an knock in March while on international duty with England.
A series of setbacks tampered his progress and the 24-year-old has been extremely unfortunate as he has been kept on the sidelines throughout the 2015-16 season.
Arsenal are rumoured to have stepped up their interest for Russian attacking midfielder Alan Dzagoev after the excellent performances he had this summer for his national team.
Arsene Wenger is looking to rebuild his midfield section after the shock Arsenal suffered last summer when they lost Fabregas and Nasri in quick succession, only to also lose Jack Wilshere to injury a month later and miss his presence throughout the season.
Alan Dzagoev has been announced as an Arsenal target before the summer started, as Wenger will be looking to change his squad a bit, with outgoings like Chamakh, Park, Arshavin and Djourou, and incomings amongst which Giroud, M’Vila and Huntelaar have been touted to be possible targets.
The Arsenal midfielder Andrei Arshavin has found a new lease of life now he is back at his boyhood club Zenit St Petersburg, but believes that his destination next season will be decided by his performances for Russia at the Euro2012 tournament this summer.
When asked where his future lied, Arshavin said: “I haven’t yet thought about it. Everything will be decided after the European Championship,”
“Of course, the result and quality of play there could affect my destiny.”
Russia have a reasonably easy Group with the Czech Republic, Greece and Poland as their opponents, but if they qualify okay they are nearly guaranteed to meet either Germany or Holland in the quarter-finals.