Why Arsenal Shouldn't Be Too Depressed About Top-Four Failure
There are several advantages of not playing in the Champions League, but it depends on whether Arsenal play a weakened team in the Europa League.Arsenal Football Club and Champions League football go hand in hand. Twenty one years of consecutive qualification for Europe’s premier club competition is an astonishing record which many teams would be envious of, but it certainly isn’t enough to appease supporters who pay some of the highest season ticket prices in world football. Since their run to the final in 2006, the Gunners’ struggles in Europe have become evident and, even when you factor in a 2009 semi-final defeat to Manchester United, it is worth noting that the failure to progress past the last-16 in seven seasons shows how difficult it has been for Arsene Wenger’s side to leave their mark on the biggest stage. Wenger makes a valid point when he says that teams like Real Madrid and Bayern Munich are stronger in Europe because they are at an advantage domestically. In the last two seasons, the Premier League has been won by a team that hasn’t played in Europe and the gap in fixtures that allows sides to have a breather gives them the upper hand and reduces their risk of injury and fatigue - something that the Frenchman is keen to emphasise. "Chelsea have done well. Congratulations to them. But in the last two seasons, a team that hasn't played in Europe has won the league," said Wenger.