Arsenal travel to Belarus to play BATE Borisov in the first leg of the Round of 32 in the Europa League at the Borisov Arena. The Gunners will be looking to put the tie beyond any doubt in the first leg itself, so that they can rest some of the first team players in the second leg as they continue their quest to finish in the top four of the Premier League. 

Here are three things to look forward to in the BATE Borisov vs Arsenal game.  

3. No Ozil

Mesut Ozil

Mesut Ozil once again finds himself out of the team, with manager Unai Emery not even naming him in the squad that traveled to Belarus. Earlier in the week, it was confirmed that Ozil had recovered from his illness and was back to full training. 

However, the manager insisted that the German midfielder was not fully fit to take part in the game and so was left behind. It remains to be seen how long this game of chicken goes on between the two parties.  

2. Familiar face in Hleb

Aleksandr Hleb

Arsenal fans will have a familiar face to look forward to when their team takes on BATE Borisov, with former Gunner Alexander Hleb in the home team. Hleb was a key part of the team for three years at Arsenal, before he chose to make the move to Barcelona. 

Although former players have been booed by the fans, it is unlikely Hleb will get a hostile reaction. 

1. Europa League is crucial

Unai Emery

Though Arsenal somewhat fortuitously find themselves in fifth place in the Premier League standings and only one point behind Manchester United in fourth, they would want to ensure they go far in the Europa League and try and win it as well. 

With the race for the top four heating up between three teams, the Europa League still remains a very viable option to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

 Here are three things to look forward to in the BATE Borisov vs Arsenal game. 


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