Wilshere looking good ahead of Arsenal return - Wenger

Cologne captain Matthias Lehmann insists Arsenal are favourites for their Europa League clash

After missing out on the Premier League top four last season, Arsenal have dropped to the Europa League and will open their campaign in Europe's second competition at home to Cologne on Thursday.

"Because he knows his body well, he has become very professional and learnt how much time it takes to get back to his best, so he is more patient". It is like you have a vehicle accident, some don't want to drive any more and some take the auto and go on again. "It's a privilege to play for Arsenal and nearly score 100 goals".

Manchester United won the Europa League last season to qualify for this year's Champions League.

Therefore this is probably the ideal time for Arsenal to play the German side who will undoubtedly be low on confidence.

Koln, too, made it to the Europa League group stage automatically, by finishing fifth in Bundesliga last season. Despite their youth, all 5 players were either already featuring regularly for the first team, or possessed the talent that left few in doubt as to whether or not they soon would be. The archetypal modern Arsenal player, a quick, technically proficient and creative player does not jive with the sort of player that has traditionally come out of England: tough, strong and tireless characters who make up for a relative lack of technical prowess with sheer work rate and determination.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has already revealed he will rest senior players for the match
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has already revealed he will rest senior players for the match

Petr Cech, Laurent Koscielny, Alexandre Lacazette, Danny Welbeck, Aaron Ramsey and Granit Xhaka joined Ozil in missing out on training ahead of the match on Wednesday. "It's true I was close to leaving because I wanted to play", Giroud said, as quoted by the Liverpool Echo. Francis Coquelin is still out for three weeks and Santi Cazorla remains but a dream.

In the midfield, Jack Wilshere may partner Mohamed Elneny.

"Obviously for a striker it's very important to score but I keep it in my mind".

Chelsea endured a hard start to the life under Antonio Conte last season but eventually lifted the title in May. Rob Holding and Alex Iwobi will be in the frame, whilst the ever impressive Reiss Nelson should be in the squad.




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