Draw Manchester United and Arsenal against good opposition in the Europa League and although both have high quality of progress, they cannot do without matches in the group stage if they qualify.
Europa League Draw: Manchester United and Arsenal face tough groups
Manchester United will face Real Sociedad, who finished sixth in La Liga last season, Sherif Tiraspol of Moldova (they beat Real Madrid last season in the Champions League) and the Cypriot side, Omonia Nicosia. Meanwhile, Arsenal will travel to the Netherlands to play PSV Eindhoven, who lost to Rangers in the Champions League match in midweek, as well as to the northern tip of Norway to face FK Bodo/Glimt (who beat Roma 6-1 in the Champions League) . Europa Conference League last season) and the Swiss side FC Zurich.
Despite the loss of striker Alexander Isaacs to Newcastle, Real Sociedad still has a talented team, which includes a promising young talent such as striker Muhammad Ali Cho and midfielder Takefusa Kubo, international players such as Mikel Merino and Mikel Oyarzabal, and they are led by 36 years. David Silva, who will return to Manchester after 10 years with City. The team plays attacking and passing football, and their manager, Emanuel Alguazel, who led them to win their first Copa del Rey title in 33 years in 2020 (played in 2021), is doing a fantastic job.
Sherif was one of the surprises in the Champions League last season. They shocked the footballing world when they beat Real Madrid at the Bernabeu (2-1) last September in the Champions League, only to finish third in their group and end up in the Europa League, losing to Braga in the last 32. . However, it is not as good as last year. They have a new manager at Stjepan Tomas, who wasn’t really good when he was trained in Turkey. This is a young squad and the most difficult thing for their opponents will be the long journey to Transnistria in Moldova.
Finally, Omonia Nicosia, coached by Celtic legend Neil Lennon, is potentially the weakest side of the group on paper, but they have passionate travel support and some experienced players such as Hungarian international Adam Lange, former Sunderland defender Adam Matthews and former American representative Mix. Discrod.
The Arsenal group is very similar to United in terms of the types of opponents. Eindhoven are clearly the strongest side and will be eager to impress after losing narrowly to Rangers (3-2 on aggregate) in the final round of the Champions League. In his first season on the bench, Ruud van Nistelrooy will return to England, having spent several successful years as a player at Manchester United, and having a team he can compete with: witness the destruction of Ajax in the Dutch Super Cup. He has a talented team that crushed Ajax in the Dutch Super Cup again in July (5-3).
Luc de Jong, returning from Barcelona, is the captain and captain, but the likes of Cody Gakbo, Xavi Simmons, Ibrahim Sangare, Joey Fermann and Jordan Teese make this a solid and dangerous team. The atmosphere at Philips Stadion will also be very special.
However, Arsenal’s most unusual trip will be in Bodø in the far north of Norway. The 2021 Norwegian champion lost to Dinamo Zagreb this week in the Champions League to end up here. They play in a small field, on a plastic one, and it is enough to distract the visiting teams from the task at hand. Roma and Jose Mourinho lost there twice last season.
Despite losing some of his best players in the last 18 months – such as Jens-Peter Haig’s move to Milan – Kjetil Knudsen is doing a great job as a coach, they are still playing great football with strength and it will be hard to beat them. Their three home matches.
Finally, FC Zurich appears to be the weakest team in the group on paper. They won the Swiss league in 2022, but lost the manager who got them there, Andre Breitenreiter, to Hoffenheim, replacing Franco Voda, the former Austria coach. So far, things are not going well this season: they have reached last place in the Swiss Super League and the only team to have not achieved a win after five matches. 18-year-old Wilfried Gonto, who made his Italy debut last June in the Nations League, is their best player and they have managed to keep him in the summer. Having said that, it could be difficult to escape from this group or pose a serious challenge to Arsenal.