Arsenal include forgotten defender in Champions League squad
Posted by  badge Boss on Sep 12, 2023 - 03:03PM
Arsenal are set for a return to the Champions League group stages after a seven-year absence (Picture: Getty)

have named their 25-man squad for the group stages as they for the first time since the 2016/17 season.

Mikel Arteta’s side qualified for Europe’s top tier competition after finishing second in the last season, which provided consolation after they finished as runners-up to having led the way for the majority of the campagin.

Arsenal have been drawn in a group alongside PSV Eindhoven, Sevilla and Lens and begin their campaign against the Dutch side at the Emirates next week at the Emirates Stadium.

There are few surprises in the squad with summer signing Jurrien Timber missing following the serious knee injury he sustained on his home debut last month against Nottingham Forest.

As a consequence, forgotten defender Cedric Soares, who hasn’t played for the club since last November and spent the second half of last season on loan at Fulham, is included.

Arsenal Champions League Squad

Goalkeepers: Aaron Ramsdale, David Raya, James Hillson

Defenders: Cedric, Lino Sousa, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Oleksandr Zinchenko, Ben White, Gabriel, Jakub Kiwior, William Saliba

Midfielders: Mohamed Elneny, Jorginho, Thomas Partey, Declan Rice, Martin Odegaard, Kai Havertz, Fabio Vieira, Emile Smith Rowe

Forwards: Leandro Trossard, Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli, Reiss Nelson, Eddie Nketiah, Gabriel Jesus

Thomas Partey, meanwhile, who sustained a groin injury prior to the international break, is also included along with England Under-19 defender Lino Sousa.

Mohamed Elneny, who is closing in on a return to full fitness after nearly a year out, is also in the squad, along with summer signings Kai Havertz and Declan Rice, the latter of whom is loving life at his new club.

The former West Ham captain won the club’s August Player of the Month Award and is relishing the opportunity to lead Arsenal’s assault on the biggest prize in club football.

He said: ‘Watching Champions League since I was a kid, you just know how special them nights are.

‘For me to walk out, hear that music, the anthem, the walk before the game, it gives you that extra bit of fire to go out there and perform, but also at the end, you’ve got that trophy that you look at, anything is possible.’

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