Arsenal’s Champions League preparations hampered with squad stuck at Luton Airport
Posted by  badge Boss on Oct 03
The Gunners’ flight was delayed due to bad weather (Picture: Getty Images)

’s preparations have been disrupted after their flight from Luton Airport to was delayed due to bad weather on Monday evening.

The Gunners were due to depart late in the afternoon ahead of Tuesday’s group stage clash against Ligue 1 side Lens but they are currently still stuck in London.

Manager was scheduled to speak to the press from Lens’ Stade Bollaert-Delelis shortly after touching down at 6pm BST but his conference has now been cancelled – though he did later do a brief phone interview.

A lightning storm in the area surrounding Luton is the cause of the delay and are reporting that the Arsenal squad may not arrive in France ‘for some time’.

The disruption will be a nuisance for Arteta, who plans away days meticulously, and the squad are not expected to arrive at their hotel until late in the evening.

Although the cancellation of Monday’s press conference was out of Arsenal’s hands, it could land them in hot water with UEFA.

Clubs participating in Europe are obliged to hold a press conference featuring both the manager and a player – with William Saliba having been put forward ahead of facing Lens – between noon and 8pm the day before the match.

Arsenal trained on Monday morning ahead of facing Lens (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal will not be able to hold their press conference during those hours and they will need to provide a reason to UEFA or potentially face punishment – though that is unlikely to happen.

Lens have made a poor start to the new Ligue 1 season and are currently 15th, though they did muster a draw away to Sevilla in their first group game.

Looking ahead to facing the French side after seeing off Bournemouth 4-0 at the weekend, Arteta said: ‘I am just thinking on that bus, how we can prepare Lens.

‘It’s going to be a really tough match away from home on Tuesday to try to win it and Manchester City will be the next step.

‘But it’s taking a lot of good things and move them for Tuesday and again try to make the right decision with the line-up and squad to maintain the level we are showing.’

Arsenal’s players trained as normal on Monday morning ahead of their delayed flight to Lens, with though Gabriel Martinelli was a no-show again.

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