FK Qarabag v Arsenal preview: Arsenal look to continue winning streak in Azerbaijan
Alexandre Lacazette and Matteo Guendouzi travel to Azerbaijan. Source: Arsenal

FK Qarabag v Arsenal preview: Arsenal look to continue winning streak in Azerbaijan

Arsenal face a trip to Azerbaijan on Thursday evening to take on FK Qarabag in match day two of Group E in the Europa League. 

Rosie Tudball

Arsenal will be looking to continue their unbeaten run as they face FK Qarabag in the second game of the Europa League group stage.  

The Gunners face a 5,000 mile round trip to the city of Baku in Azerbaijan where Qarabag will be waiting to give Unai Emery’s men a game.  

The hosts will be hoping to kick start their European campaign, as they faced a 2-0 defeat to Sporting Lisbon on the opening match up of group E.  

Arsenal go into the game as firm favourites, with a seven-game winning streak in all competitions - including a 4-2 victory over Vorskla in their Europa League opener - the North Londoners will certainly be travelling to continue their formidable form.  

Qarabag won't be easy opposition for the Gunners, as they’re currently unbeaten in their league with five wins and one draw. 

Team news: 

Unai Emery is expected to juggle his team around to suit the trip to Fulham on Sunday lunchtime. Mesut Özil and Alexandre Lacazette have travelled, however Henrikh Mkhitaryan remains in London due to security concerns.  

Qarabag manager Gurban Gurbanov gave his opinion on the situation, claiming that Arsenal were ‘too scared’ to take the Armenian to Azerbaijan.  

‘’I didn't want politics to interrupt the sport but we could not do anything on this issue.’’ 

‘’Arsenal may be afraid that in front of 60,000 Azerbaijani fans, Mkhitaryan has some pressure.’’ 

Gurbanov is expected to set up his team the same as they did in their opening loss against Sporting Lisbon.  

The host’s only reported injury concern is Dani Quintana due to ligament damage.  

The quality of the two teams are incomparable on paper, however, as many teams have realised in the past, European competitions can surprise at any given moment.  

Predicted Line-ups: 

Qarabag: Vagner, Medvedev, Rzezniczak, Huseynov, Gurrier, Qarayev, Diniyev, Madatov, Zoubir, Ozobic, Emeghara

Arsenal: Leno; Bellerin, Holding, Sokratis, Monreal; Elneny, Guendouzi, Welbeck, Ozil, Iwobi; Aubameyang.