Spare a thought for Lukas Podolski ahead of this one. The former Arsenal and Cologne star cares so much for “the two clubs of his heart” that he’ll be up at 4am to watch the game on TV in Japan.
Arsenal fans across the globe have been doing that for years, of course, but they’ve never seen us in the rebranded Europa League. Our last match in the competition formerly known as the Uefa Cup was the 2000 final – and we lost that on penalties. The quest to go one better starts on Thursday night.
You’re in the right place for a comprehensive pre-match briefing – we’ve got some classic Poldi goals, team news, an exclusive chat with Arsene Wenger, match facts, graphics and a chance to test your knowledge.
ONE TO WATCH: OLIVIER GIROUD
Wenger: “I don’t want Olivier to feel uneasy [because he’s sat next to me at this press conference], but I have said many times that his contribution has been huge. He has had a great evolution here and overall his…