Arsenal will learn their upcoming Europa League opponents this week, with the group stage draw set to take place on Friday.
UEFA have confirmed that the Europa League group stage draw will take place on Friday, 26th August at 12:00 BST in Turkey, and it will be streamed live on the UEFA website.
Arsenal will be in pot one of the draw, meaning they’ll avoid other pot one teams – including AS Roma, Manchester United, Lazio, Braga, Red Star Belgrade, and the final two top seeds that are yet to be confirmed.
Clubs from the same association can’t be drawn against each other anyway, so Manchester United were never a potential group-stage opponent.
Arsenal report that none of Monaco, Real Sociedad, Rennes, Union Saint-Gilloise, Real Betis, Union Berlin, Freiburg, Nantes, Qarabag, Midtjylland, and Sturm Graz will be in pot one, so all are potential opponents for Arsenal.
Given the matches will all be on Thursday nights, we already know the exact dates of all the group fixtures:
- Matchday 1: September 8
- Matchday 2: September 15
- Matchday 3: October 6
- Matchday 4: October 13
- Matchday 5: October 27
- Matchday 6: November 3
The group winners progress to the round of 16 beginning March 9th, whilst the group runners-up progress to the round of 32 beginning February 16th. The third-place teams drop into the Europa Conference League.
So there’s a lot of incentive to top the group, particularly in this hectic World Cup season.