Arsene Wenger’s side make their first continental appearance of the season on Thursday, but it comes in Europe’s second tier
Arsenal enter relatively unfamiliar terrain on Thursday when they get their Europa League campaign under way against Koln.
The Gunners finished fifth in the Premier League last season, meaning they missed out on a Champions League place and, as a consequence, they have dropped to the second tier of Europe’s elite.
Bundesliga outfit Koln also finished fifth last term and they represent one of Arsenal’s tougher opponents in Group H, with games against BATE Borisov and Red Star Belgrade to come.
SQUADS & TEAM NEWS
|Goalkeepers||Cech, Ospina, Iliev, Huddart, Keto, Macey|
|Defenders||Debuchy, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Holding, Monreal, Mustafi, Chambers, Bellerin, Kolasinac|
|Midfielders||Ramsey, Wilshere, Ozil, Iwobi, Reine-Adelaide, Xhaka, Maitland-Niles, Coquelin, Elneny, Bielik, Gilmour, McGuane, Nelson, Sheaf|
|Forwards||Sanchez, Lacazette, Giroud, Walcott, Welbeck, Akpom, Willock, Da Silva, Eyoma, Nketiah|
Arsenal will be without Francis Coquelin, who is carrying a hamstring injury, while Santi Cazorla has not been included in the Europa League squad and is months away from a return to match action anyway.
Arsene Wenger has included a number of youth-team players in his squad and may opt to rotate first-team players with a crunch Premier League clash against rivals Chelsea three days later.
Potential starting XI: Ospina; Holding, Mustafi, Monreal; Bellerin, Kolasinac, Elneny, Wilshere; Nelson, Giroud, Sanchez.
|Goalkeepers||T. Horn, Kessler, Muller, Scott|
|Defenders||Heintz, Sorensen, Maraoh, Hector, Olkowski, Mere, J. Horn, Klunter, Queiros, Rausch|
|Midfielders||Hoger, Risse, Jojic, Clemens, Ozcan, Bittencourt, Lehmann, Nartey|
|Forwards||Rudnevs, Zoller, Osako, Cordoba, Guirassy|
Koln head coach Peter Stoger confirmed that striker Artjoms Rudnevs would not be available for the game against Arsenal, but other than that they have a clean bill of health.
Marcel Risse and Milos Jojic have returned to training so will come into consideration for the trip to north London.
Potential starting XI: T. Horn; Hector, Heintz, Mere, Klunter; Jojic, Risse, Lehmann, Bittencourt; Cordoba, Osako.