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Arsenal to play the Court of Arbitration in Sport in Champs League knock out stage.

By Tony Attwood

Off we go again.  Except this time it is different due to the legal process.

In the final knock out round we have two groups: champions of smaller footballing nations who have got through the draw, and non-champions of larger footballing countries. Five teams from each section will qualify for the group stage.

And two of them will play the Court of Arbitration in Sport.

In each group there are five seeded teams which are drawn against unseeded teams.  In the Champions section for example, there is Celtic who have battled through a couple of preliminary rounds.

Seeded: Basel, Celtic, Steaua Bucharest, Viktoria Plzen, Dinamo Zagreb.

Unseeded: Austria Vienna, Legia Warsaw, Maribor, Ludogorets Razgrad, Shakhtar Karagandy.

In our group we have…

Seeded: Arsenal, Lyon, Milan, Schalke, Zenit St Petersburg.

Unseeded: PSV Eindhoven, Metalist Kharkiv, Fenerbahce, Real Sociedad, Pacos de Ferreira.

So who is to play and who is to avoid?  And what is the Court going to do?

Already we know who we can’t play – AC Mail, Zenit and the like who are obviously seeded with us.    And we know who we would like to play: Pacos de Ferreira of Portugal in their first Champions League venture.  Their ground holds 5,000 so they will play at Porto’s ground, and you could buy Suárez’ left ankle for their annual turnover.

Mind you, if they are the Portuguese Swindon Town, maybe we should avoid them.

Metalist Kharkiv sounds like a rather dark and very heavy rock band, and we since we don’t do well in the Ukraine, (not least because their season has started already so they are up and running a month in front of us) it might be a venue to be avoided.  It is their first Champions League too.

But here comes the judge.  Metalist K are under investigation for match-fixing and the case is being heard next week ahead of the play offs – although if the Metal Men (I made that up in a moment of very low inspiration, it is of course not their real nickname – anyone know what it is?) could then appeal which could put the whole Champs League back a bit.   Metalist have featured on Untold before, in an analysis of clubs that have been bought by billionaires, and although beyond the name of the billionaire we didn’t get too far with them.

And speaking of the lawyers we have Fenerbahce. They were banned for match fixing in June but an appeal to the arbitration body CAS lifted the injunction and they are allowed to play until CAS works out what is what on 28 August.   My amazing in depth and total analysis of Fenerbahce and match fixing is on Untold here.

Moving on there is at last a club closer to home, and without any legal whatnots.  PSV with its new young team.  The captain is 22 (Georginio Wijnaldum),  Zakaria Bakkali is 17, Memphis Depay is 19, Karim Rekik is 18 and on loan from  Manchester City, Jeffrey Bruma ex-Chelsea is 21.  Makes us look like a bunch of old men.  (No comments please).

Real Sociedad scored more than anyone in the league outside the big two in Spain but Illarramendis is one of the hundreds of players who went to Real Mad (£23.5m).   But to put things in perspective they ended up 34 points and 45 goals behind Barca.  It is their first Champs League since 2003/4.   They still have Carlos Vela, but as I said yesterday Spanish football is in a muddle so I’ve no idea quite what we might get here.

Hey ho, but we’ll know soon enough.  And then there’s a 40 percent chance we’ll then have to see what the Court of Arbitration for Sport comes up with.  But don’t expect any help from BT Sport.  There are more than two teams involved, so that’s their maths out the window for a start.

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24 comments to Arsenal to play the Court of Arbitration in Sport in Champs League knock out stage.

  • @blacksheep63

    If you look around twitter you will see very many arsenal fans in a mad flap about our projects against any of these teams. Frankly if we are worried about them then goodness knows how we shall cope if we make it to the group stage. If we draw either of the teams awaiting judgement, do we get a bye if they are thrown out?

  • Mandy Dodd

    doubt if we will get a bye Blacksheep – I am sure the organisation which oversees such things are more than capable of somehow arranging extra games to boost their coffers in such an event – so I would expect some sort of playoff, especially if both those two are banned – maybe involving the two teams they were drawn against?

  • I PRAY THEY SHOULD GIVE US THE CLUB THAT IS NOT THOUGH SO THAT WE QUALIFY FOR CHAMPIONS LEAGUE.

  • colario

    @Tony: “But don’t expect any help from BT Sport. There are more than two teams involved, so that’s their maths out the window for a start.”

    Good one Tony.

    I think it was Wednesday when Talk sprot tried the numbers game with a mix of numbers to show that Arsenal are finished.
    It was either ignorance or ribaldry. If it was the former than the speaker’s intelligence was below that of the ‘red tops’. If it was meant to be funny then the speaker was the worst stand up comedian ever.

    In theory who we draw could be the one certain piece of Arsenal news this week but as you say it could be yet more fanciful news!

    Addict that I am the adrenaline is already stirring through my Arsenal veins. Can’t wait to see who we draw.

  • Whatever happens during the draw, we are certainly getting a non-speculative news today. That is good for a change. Speculations do my head in.

    Anyone knows when the draw is taking place today?

  • uk

    so we’ve drawn ferna

  • Mandy Dodd

    Looks like we got Fenerbache – if they are allowed to play this game.
    Assuming this goes ahead, a tricky draw, possibly the most difficult in the bunch, one it would have been good to avoid

  • There is a lot of mindless negativity and genuine concerns out there at the moment – when it comes to the Champions League draw though I do know one thing and that is that we are the team to avoid.

    As Walter White once said: “I am the one who knocks”

  • uk

    @mandy
    i think we’ll get a bye. but there certainly wont be a play-off match between the teams they were drawn against because that would mean only one instead of 2teams get to qualify, leaving the competition one team short

  • uk

    though their countries might be allowed to field the next in line teams instead of the banned ones

  • BRING ON FENERBAHCE!

  • Mandy Dodd

    could well be right uk, or the powers that be might just let them off anyway, not the most active of organisations. But a bye would do nicely

  • Adam

    So we get Fenerbahce.

  • Dinamo Zagreb v Austria Vienna

    Ludogorets v Basel

    Plzen v Maribor

    Shakhter Karaganda v Celtic

    Steaua Bucharest v Legia Warsaw

    Lyon v Real Sociedad

    Schalke 04 v FC Metalist Kharkiv

    Pacos Ferreira v Zenit St Petersburg

    PSV v Milan

    Fenerbahce v Arsenal

    Just to repeat from the point above:

    Fenerbahce were banned for match fixing in June but an appeal to the arbitration body CAS lifted the injunction and they are allowed to play until CAS works out what is what on 28 August. My amazing in depth and total analysis of Fenerbahce and match fixing is on Untold here. (Well ok the link has disappeared at this point but you can pick it up in the article)

  • Woolwich Peripatetic

    DogFace,

    As usual, spot on. All the other teams were crapping themselves that they could get us in the draw, as they do every year. Lots of the smaller leagues would probably lobby for the EPL to get 4 passes to the group stage, just to increase their own chances of making it. The fourth placed team in La Liga is not nearly as scary a prospect.

  • para

    It just seems silly that the CAS are making a decision after the teams have to play their games? And then to say the verdict will be on 27 or 28 August, what is the point of that? It just causes more problems which could have been avoided. I sometimes wonder at the intelligence of these organisations. Anyway, Arsenal need to win what ever happens after.

  • colario

    ‘To be or not to be? That is the problem. Let them play in the champions league or not let them play. Poor old Hamlet didn’t have the CAS to help him decide.

    From Tony;
    ‘And speaking of the lawyers we have Fenerbahce. They were banned for match fixing in June but an appeal to the arbitration body CAS lifted the injunction and they are allowed to play until CAS works out what is what on 28 August. My amazing in depth and total analysis of Fenerbahce and match fixing is on Untold here.’

    Its easy. Let Fenerbahce play the preliminaries and if they get knocked out then the decision is made for us. Viola!

    We have to win for we are not Real madness, we are not Barc or manure or litterpool against these teams Fenerbahce will be banned against us they will be allowed to continue. Sa la vie!

  • para,

    I’m not so concerned about the whole CAS thing because, like you, I expect Arsenal to win. That’s all. I will be disappointed if we cannot do this but would rather depend on CAS ruling to move forward.

    I trust the team to qualify on the field of play in typical Arsenal style at this stage of the competition.

  • Va Cong

    Show some faith guys stop pooping your pants. We’ll be ok

  • GoingGoingGooner

    @Dogface – I agree

    WE are the team whom others fear.

  • Arun

    I’m not worried about Fenerbahce but about the games that follow these: Fulham away, where we have won only once in our past 3 visits and the spuds home game. I think that with our thin squad, we are going to struggle in these 2 matches and it might cost us a few vital points at the beginning of the season.

  • Edda

    I really hope that AW and the Arsenal team are gonna take the threat from Fenebache seriously, they were in the Europa League semi-final last year and are no push-over. Its gonna be as tight as it were last year against Udinese. They are turkish, but thank god they dont have Drobga 🙂
    (Did anyone whisper Dirk Kuyt?)

  • Arun,

    I understand your apprehension but why not worry about those games when the time comes. I worry about our visits to Stoke City and to Sunderland and to Old Trafford and to ….

    I’m sure you get the gist 🙂

  • GoingGoingGooner

    In the final run in of last season our club showed that they knew how to work. One can criticise the team for lack of skill, etc. but not work ethic. The club saw the results of pure work and though 4th is not where we want to be, the way we got 4th is surely a good sign. I am certain that the club will not Fenerbache lightly.