Olympiakos v Arsenal Team News
Arsenal are back in Europa League action on Thursday when they visit Olympiakos in the first leg of their Europa League last-32 tie.
Arsenal made it all the way through to the final last year before losing to Premier League rivals Chelsea and they eased their way into the knockout stages this season, overcoming Eintracht Frankfurt, Standard Liege and Vitoria de Guimaraes to top what could have been a difficult group.
A clash with Greek giants Olympiakos is next on the agenda for Mikel Arteta’s side, with the Spaniard set to take charge of the club for the first time in a European match after succeeding Unai Emery in the dugout at the Emirates Stadium late last year.
Matchday in Athens 🇬🇷
🏆 @EuropaLeague last-32
📍 Karaiskakis Stadium
🕗 8pm kick-off
#️⃣ #UEL pic.twitter.com/4o1xtdxXoI
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) February 20, 2020
Arteta will have to do without Mesut Ozil for the trip to Piraeus, as the German midfielder has remained in north London due to personal reasons.
Fellow midfielder Lucas Torreira will also miss out due to illness, but Matteo Guendouzi is back in the fold after being left out of the squad for Arsenal’s Premier League victory over Newcastle last weekend.
Defender Pablo Mari could be handed his debut for the club after joining from Flamengo during last month’s transfer window, but Cedric Soares, Calum Chambers and Kieran Tierney all remain sidelined.
Olympiakos, who have dropped into the Europa League after finishing third in their Champions League group, will be without winger Hillal Soudani, who will miss the rest of the season with a cruciate ligament injury.
The Greek side have no other fitness concerns to contend with, although they will have to cope without Daniel Podence and Yassine Meriah, who both left during the January transfer window for Wolves and Kasımpaşa respectively.
This will be the ninth meeting between the two sides since 2009, with all the previous eight having come in the Champions League – the two sides having claimed four wins apiece.