Champions League: Wenger and Arsenal will face first proper test against Fenerbahce

10/08/2013 no comments »
Champions League: Wenger and Arsenal will face first proper test against Fenerbahce

Football fans were given a little teaser of the upcoming football season yesterday when UEFA drew the fixtures of the UEFA Champions League Play off round. Highlight of the draw was certainly Arsenal’s match up against Turkish Super Lig runners up Fenerbahce Istanbul.

Arsenal who fought with Tottenham and Chelsea until the end of the season secured the 4th place finish on the final day of the season. However, now Wenger’s team has to face a tough opponent with Fenerbahce in the qualifying stage. For Arsenal, this will be the first proper test of the season. The Turkish team also has with Raul Meireles (former Chelsea) and Dirk Kuyt (former Liverpool) two former Premier League players in their squad. The team also had some recent success on the international stage. Fenerbahce came close to reaching the Europa League final last year and only missed it by only one goal against Benfica. Benfica advanced with a 3-2 aggregate score in the Semi-final. The last time Fenerbahce and Arsenal met was in the Champions League 2008/09 when the game ended goalless at the Emirates.

Another mouth-watering class for football enthusiasts is between the Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven and the second most successful team in the Europa League history – AC Milan. AC Milan finished 3rd last year and is under pressure to reach the Champions League group stage. Milan will need all the striking power of Balotelli, El Shaarawy and Robinho to advance. Like Arsenal, Milan will face a difficult task to reach the competition this year.

The third highlight of the Champions League qualifying round will be Celtic Glasgow against Shakhtyor Karaganda who have won the Kazakhstan Premier League two years in a row.

The remaining fixtures are as followed:

  • Dinamo Zagreb (Cro) v Austria Vienna (Aut)
  • Ludogorets (Bul) v Basle (Swi)
  • Plzen (Cze) v Maribor (Slo)
  • Steaua Bucharest (Rom) v Legia Warsaw (Pol)
  • Lyon (Fra) v Real Sociedad (Spa)
  • Schalke 04 (Ger) v Metalist Kharkiv (Ukr)
  • Pacos Ferreira (Por) v Zenit St Petersburg (Rus)
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