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Arsenal host Cologne to open Europa League campaign


Arsenal will be in relatively unfamiliar territory as they are set to play in their first Europa League game in two decades when they host FC Cologne at the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners, who failed to qualify for the Champions League after finishing fifth in the Premier League last year, are favoured to beat the visitors in this midweek clash, but they are also expected to field a rotated side against the Germans, who also finished fifth in the last Bundesliga term.

Form-wise, Arsenal are coming off a 3-0 win against AFC Bournemouth, while Cologne are without a win in three Bundesliga rounds this term and are the lone team without a point this season.
Nextbet is offering 1.39 for an Arsenal win in North London, while an upset by Cologne will be paid at 7.71.

“On the injury front we have no big problems, but a few players have some response to playing two international games, like [Mesut] Ozil and [Aaron] Ramsey,” said Wenger.

The English side are already without Francis Coquelin, who is still out with a hamstring injury, and the suspended Laurent Koscielny.

That said, a -1.5 handicap against Arsenal is offered at 2.08 in Nextbet.

Olivier Giroud, who is targeting to score his 100th goal for Arsenal, is expected to lead the Gunners attack and has said they will still field a “very good team” against the Germans in this Europa League clash.

“We’ve got a very good team on paper tomorrow,” said Giroud, who is set to start this Europa League game after playing Arsenal’s last three games as substitute.

“We are focused on this Europa League, we want to go and win it, we are very ambitious and I am looking forward to the game tomorrow.

Giroud opening the scoring will pay 4.04 in Nextbet, while 1.76 will be paid out if he successfully puts his name on the score sheet regardless if he scores first or not.

Many games in the early rounds of the Europa League are tabbed as one-sided matches, except in few cases like the match between Bundesliga’s Hertha BSC vs La Liga’s Athletic Bilbao at Berlin Olympic Stadium, where Nextbet pays 2.83 for a home win, 3.19 for a draw and 2.61 for an away victory.

For the best odds in the Europa League, visit Nextbet!