Arsenal face a 2,400-mile round Europa League trip this week thanks to poor fixture scheduling.
Arsenal face West Brom on Monday night before heading to Belarus to face BATE Borisov for their second Europa League clash of the campaign on Thursday.
The trip is 1,202 miles away, meaning that the Gunners will have to travel around 2,404 miles there and back towards the tail end of the week.
Arsene Wenger’s side then face newly promoted Brighton at 12pm on Sunday, which is thankfully at the Emirates. However, the Seagulls have no mid-week fixtures and will be boosted by their recent 1-0 victory over ninth-place Newcastle.
Non-stop flights from London to Belarus typically take two hours 55 minutes. Therefore, it’s not as if the Arsenal squad are jetting off to Australia. However, the preparation and potentially having to fly over night or early in the morning, on top of playing a 90-minute football match, might be draining.
Fortunately, Wenger rotated his starting XI slightly against FC Cologne and he’s likely to do the same against BATE Borisov.
The boss knows that he has three games in six days and will adjust accordingly so it’s unlikely that we’ll see the same starting XI against West Brom tonight (Monday) as we will on Thursday in Belarus.
“Television decides when you play and that’s it [all three games will be screened live],” the Frenchman said ahead of the clash against the Baggies.
“Where it becomes more difficult is after the Europa League game in Belarus. We then play Sunday morning.
“From Monday to Thursday, time will be short and especially from Thursday to Sunday. But you have to adapt.
“Maybe we have to make some decisions in BATE Borisov that will give us a chance to recover between the two games.”