Arsenal, Chelsea Face Long Europa Trips

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Arsenal and Chelsea both face long-distance trips in the Europa League after the group stages were drawn on Friday.

Unai Emery’s side were drawn in Group E with Qarabag of Azerbaijan, Sporting Lisbon and Vorskla of Ukraine.

Chelsea will also be travelling to eastern Europe having been drawn with Belarus’ BATE Borisov, Hungary’s Vidi and PAOK Salonika in Group L.

Emery is no stranger to the competition having won the competition three times, back-to-back, with Sevilla.

The London club were knocked out in the semi-finals last season losing to eventual winners Atletico Madrid, 2-1 on aggregate.

Lisbon and Arsenal last faced one another in 1969 in Europa League predecessor the Fairs Cup with the Gunners emerging as the winners over two legs.

Chelsea won the competition back in 2013, with Rafa Benitez in charge, beating Benfica 2-1 in the Amsterdam Arena.

Europa League Draw

Group A: Bayer Leverkusen, Ludogorets, FC Zurich, AEK Larnaca.

Group B: FC Salzburg, Celtic, RB Leipzig, Rosenborg.

Group C: Zenit St Petersburg, FC Copenhagen, Bordeaux, Slavia Prague.

Group D: Anderlecht, Fenerbahce, Dinamo Zagreb, Spartak Trnava.

Group E: Arsenal, Sporting CP, Qarabag, FC Vorskla.

Group F: Olympiakos, AC Milan, Real Betis, Dudelange.

Group G: Villarreal, Rapid Vienna, Spartak Moscow, Rangers.

Group H: Lazio, Marseille, Eintracht Frankfurt, APOE.

Group I: Besiktas, Genk, Malmo, Sarpsborg.

Group J: Sevilla, Krasnodar, Standard Liege, Akhisarspor.

Group K: Dynamo Kiev, Astana, Rennes, Jablonec.

Group L: Chelsea, PAOK, BATE, Vidi FC.