Arsenal take on Ukrainian side Vorskla at the Emirates Stadium this Thursday as the Gunners begin their 2018/19 Europa League campaign under new boss Unai Emery, after crashing out of the competition in the semi-final last campiagn at the hands of Atletico Madrid under former boss Arsene Wenger.
But this time under Emery, the Gunners will be targeting the finals of the Europa League. With the new Spanish boss being a three-time winner of the competition with two different teams.
Unai Emery’s impressive record in Europe has led many top bookmarkers, pundits and betting odds calculator to back the former Sevilla boss to go all the way to win the Europa League title, despite it being his first season in charge of Arsenal.
Indeed, just as last season, Arsenal are huge favourites to lift the Europa League trophy, along with fellow Premier League rivals Chelsea and last season’s winner Atletico Madrid.
But Emery and his men will need to make their intentions clear with a comprehensive victory when they host Vorksla on Thursday evening in London.
The Ukrainian side are expected to pose little treat to the Gunners at the Emirates Stadium, with their London visit being their second ever Europa League group phase appearance; with their first ending on a sad note after they finished the group at the very foot, without registering a single victory in the process.
Vorskla then went a couple of years without making it back into the Europa League group stages, as their last two seasons saw them fail to pass the third qualifying round in the UEL.
The clash between Arsenal and Vorskla will be the first time the two sides are ever meeting on any level.
The Arsenal boss made a disappointing start to his career at Arsenal, one in which he would like to forget in a hurry, after back-to-back Premier League defeats to Champions Manchester City and Chelsea – conceding five goals in the process.
However, Emery managed to bounce back in subsequent games, picking up three wins on the spin, setting up a great run in the build up to this game on Thursday night.
The new Gunners boss will also be looking to follow in the footsteps of his predecessor, Arsene Wenger, by rotating most members of his squad for the Europa League.
The huge difference in quality between the Gunners and Vorskla will most likely see the host clinch all three points in a convincing victory at the Emirates Stadium. And it would come as a huge shock should we encounter anything other than a victory for Unai Emery’s side.
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