The first leg of this Europa League semi-final will come as a welcome distraction to Arsenal and Valencia who are both struggling in the race for a Champions League spot in their respective domestic leagues.

This tactical preview will look at some of the potentially key tactical battles and areas where both managers will be looking to get the better of their opponent.

How they might line up


Arsenal have been dealt with the news that neither Denis Suárez nor Aaron Ramsey will be available for the rest of the season. They join Héctor Bellerín, Rob Holding and Danny Welbeck on the long-term injury list.

Left-back Nacho Monreal will face a late fitness test and Mesut Özil should return after missing Sunday’s defeat at Leicester with a bruised foot.

Unai Emery has favoured a 3-4-1-2 formation recently, and Valencia manager Marcelino has admitted that this is how he expects his compatriot to set out his side. Assuming Monreal is not risked, Arsenal’s line-up could look something like this, with Mesut Özil moving into the wide channels to support the attacking wing-backs:

To read the full tactical preview of this game – click here

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