Arsenal news: The Gunners’ Europa League clash against PSV on Thursday has been postponed and there are very few dates available in which the game could be rearranged
Arsenal’s Europa League match with PSV Eindhoven on Thursday has been postponed. A statement by UEFA confirmed that “this is due to the severe limitations on police resources and organisational issues related to the ongoing events surrounding the national mourning for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II”.
There had been some hope that the game would go ahead last week after the Metropolitan Police had indicated that they were comfortable for it to go ahead. However, with 3,000 PSV fans expected to travel to London for the game, the police decided that they could not provide the appropriate level of safety while their resources were so stretched.
football.london understands that Arsenal desperately wanted the game to go ahead and explored a number of different options to try and make this happen. One of these was to flip the fixtures so that the reverse fixture in Eindhoven could take place on Thursday.
Another option considered was the possibility of playing the game behind closed doors at the Emirates Stadium. However, with so many fans having already booked travel to the ground it was thought that this would still be a security issue even if the game was played with no one at the Emirates.
There has been some confusion as to why Chelsea’s Champions League game against RB Salzburg has been allowed to take place, while the Gunners’ clash has been postponed. football.london understands that the fact that the game is 24 hours later is the main reason for this, with police resources also being devoted to rehearsals for the Queen’s funeral on Monday.
With the fixture list so congested due to the mid-season World Cup in Qatar there do not appear to be many time slots where the game can now be rescheduled to. UEFA have confirmed to Arsenal that they would like the game to be played before club football pauses for the World Cup on November 13. With this in mind there are two slots available where the game could be rescheduled.
One of these is on the week beginning November 7, where Arsenal are currently scheduled to play Brighton in the EFL Cup on either the 8th or 9th of November. There is a possibility that the Carabao Cup clash could be moved to make way for the PSV game, but as this would be after the scheduled end of the Europa League group stages, it raises concerns over the fairness of the competition. The possibility of also moving Bodo-Glimt and FC Zurich’s clash to a date in the week of November 7 is being considered, but it’s not yet clear if that is feasible.
The other available week is the one beginning on October 17. The Gunners are due to host Manchester City on Wednesday, October 19, at the Emirates Stadium, but it is possible that that game could be moved in order to facilitate rescheduling the PSV game. However, this match is due to be broadcast on Amazon Prime and it is not yet clear how they will react to the prospect of the match being rescheduled.
At time of writing there is still no guidance from the Premier League as to whether Sunday’s match with Brentford will go ahead. Arsenal are preparing at London Colney for the event that it does however.