In a long-awaited return to the Champions League stage, Arsenal will host PSV Eindhoven at the Emirates Stadium for their opening group stage match, marking the club’s first appearance in Europe’s premier club competition in six years.
The Gunners’ last foray into the Champions League dates back to March 2017, when they faced a crushing defeat at the hands of Bayern Munich, losing 10-2 on aggregate during the round of 16. Remarkably, the sole survivor from that squad still donning Arsenal’s colors is Egypt’s midfield maestro, Mohamed Elneny.
Since that painful exit, Arsenal has undergone a period of rejuvenation. Despite narrowly missing out on the English Premier League title to Manchester City last season, the Gunners remain unbeaten in the league so far this season, instilling hope and excitement among their fanbase.
On the other side of the pitch, PSV Eindhoven arrives in London with an impressive record in the Dutch Eredivisie. Under the guidance of coach Peter Bosz, the Dutch outfit has secured victories in all four of their league matches, culminating in a commanding 4-0 win over NEC Nijmegen in their latest outing.
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta will make his managerial Champions League debut when the Emirates Stadium lights up for the encounter. However, Arteta faces a series of setbacks on the injury front, with key players Gabriel Martinelli, Jurien Timber, Thomas Partey, and Mohamed Elneny ruled out of the game.
PSV is grappling with its own injury concerns, as summer signing Noa Land remains a doubt for the match after being forced off during their recent league clash. Additionally, Armando Obispo, Fredrik Oppegard, and Mauro Junior will be sidelined due to injuries, leaving Peter Bosz with selection headaches.
Arsenal and PSV have crossed paths eight times in various competitions, including last season’s Europa League group stage encounters. Arsenal secured a narrow 1-0 win in the first leg at home, while PSV responded with a 2-0 victory in the return fixture.
In their previous Champions League meetings:
Arsenal emerged victorious twice.
PSV clinched one win.
The two teams settled for a draw on three occasions.
Arsenal XI: Ramsdale; White, Saliba, Gabriel, Zinchenko; Odegaard, Rice, Havertz; Saka, Jesus, Trossard.
PSV XI: Benitez; Teze, Ramalho, Bella-Kotchap, Dest; Schouten, Veerman; Bakayoko, Saibari, Lozano; De Jong.
The return of Champions League football to the Emirates Stadium promises to be an electrifying affair as Arsenal aims to reassert its presence on the European stage, while PSV Eindhoven seeks to continue its early-season momentum with an impressive showing in London. Football fans around the world will be tuning in to witness the long-awaited resurgence of Arsenal in this prestigious competition.