Arsenal are hoping to avenge their defeat to Olympiacos in last year’s competition after being drawn against the Greek champions once again in the Europa League.
Mikel Arteta’s side succumbed to a stunning upset against Olympiacos in the round of 32 last year, with Youssef El-Arabi scoring in the 119th minute of a tense and nervous tie.
The pair now meet in the round of 16 in this year’s competition after Arsenal produced a dramatic late comeback to knock out Benfica in the round of 32, having fallen behind 2-1 in the second leg before goals from Kieran Tierney and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang averted disaster.
With their domestic campaign almost certainly too volatile to secure European football by way of a Premier League finish, and with the Gunners knocked out of both the FA Cup and Carabao Cup, the Europa League remains the last gateway for Arteta’s side.
Failure to win the competition will have serious ramifications on the club’s capabilities in the transfer market, with Arteta hoping to continue the overhaul of his first-team squad.
Even if they are to come through the tie against Olympiacos, though, there are still a number of high-quality challengers vying to lift the trophy in Gdansk, including the likes of Manchester United, who will face AC Milan, Tottenham and Ajax.
Round of 16 draw in full
Ajax vs Young Boys
Dynamo Kiev vs Villarreal
AS Roma vs Shakhtar Donetsk
Olympiacos vs Arsenal
Dinamo Zagreb vs Tottenham
Manchester United vs AC Milan
Slavia Prague vs Rangers
Granada vs Molde
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