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Former Gunner Adrian Clarke runs his analytical eye over our youngsters’ first-leg performance against Blackpool

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Premier League game due to take place on April 23 has now been moved for live television coverage

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Rob Holding says he’s becoming more aggressive and demanding as a result of working with Jens Lehmann at London Colney. After two stints as a Gunner during his playing career, the German returned to Arsenal last summer to assist Arsene Wenger in a coaching capacity. Tending to sit in the directors’ box on match days rather […]

Tomas Rosicky has confirmed that he’ll play a farewell game in his native Czech Republic as he draws a line under his playing career. The 37-year-old, who retired in December last year, is organising a friendly at Sparta Prague’s Letna Stadium on 9 June and is planning to invite former teammates from his boyhood club, […]

The Romanian U19 team is very close to qualifying for the European Championships, and in the build up to that, Romanian sports website spent some time at the training ground and with Arsenal youngster Vlad Dragomir. Our thanks to Arseblog reader Lucian for the translation of the interview (original here), and there’s some very […]

Arsenal took on Blackpool away this week in the first leg of their FA Youth Cup semi-final and it was an eventful encounter at Bloomfield Road, with the game ending 2-2, while Trae Coyle missed a penalty for the young Gunners. Kwame Ampadu will undoubtedly be delighted that his side showed plenty of promise going […]

The agent of Hector Bellerin says that despite stories linking the Spaniard with a move away from Arsenal this summer, he hasn’t been contacted by other clubs at this moment in time. Last week it was reported that the club would be willing to allow the 22 year old to leave if a fee of […]

• Arsenal midfielder’s hopes of first cap since 2016 dashed• Jordan Pickford to start in goal for England in Amsterdam

Jack Wilshere’s hopes of earning a first international cap since Euro 2016 have been dashed after he returned to Arsenal with a knee injury.

The midfielder did not travel to Amsterdam with Gareth Southgate’s England squad for Friday’s friendly against the Netherlands because of what the manager said was a tendon problem. Wilshere is having treatment with Arsenal and Southgate has not ruled the 26-year-old out of Tuesday’s game at home to Italy.

Related: International football: 10 things to look out for in this round of friendlies

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The Arsenal midfielder is relishing a fresh chance with England seven months after Arsène Wenger realised his worst fears

It was in early August, with the new Premier League season primed, when Arsène Wenger delivered the news Jack Wilshere dreaded. The midfielder had been working up a sweat on an exercise bike in the gym at Arsenal’s training ground when the manager ambled over and left the spin session stalled. “It was an honest conversation,” Wilshere recalls. “It had been boiling up for a while. Everybody knew I had a year left on my deal and had been out on loan, got injured and wasn’t really in his plans. He just said: ‘At the moment we are not going to be offering you a contract so, if you can get one somewhere else, you can go.’”

Almost eight months on and, as he sits in the Futsal hall at St George’s Park, it is easier for Wilshere to reflect on such a painful memory even though, in essence, not much has changed. Arsenal’s stance may have shifted to the extent they have made a contract offer, albeit on a reduced basic wage of around £80,000 a week with significant incentives for a player whose body had proved so brittle. But, while Wilshere’s priority is to stay, he will not do so on those terms, leaving discussions at an impasse. With interest from Everton, West Ham and Juventus, the possibility remains that he could this summer leave the club he joined at the age of nine.

Related: Jordan Pickford set to wear England No 1 shirt against Netherlands

Related: James Tarkowski has England pedigree as a ball-playing centre-half | Jacob Steinberg

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A feline invader merits a Uefa inquiry, while Danny Welbeck showcased with impunity the English talent for deception also displayed by Sterling, Vardy and of course Dele Alli

Presumably, everyone is up to speed by now about the reassuring news from Uefa, permanently trying to find different ways of curing football’s ills, that it has launched disciplinary action against Besiktas because of the pitch invader that briefly interrupted the club’s Champions League tie against Bayern Munich.

Even by Uefa’s standards, it’s a belter of a story given that it was actually a ginger cat who had wandered in off the streets to investigate what all these silly humans were up to. Unfortunately for Besiktas, nobody at Uefa appears to be aware that cats, as a general rule, do as they please, rather than what they are told. Nor is it particularly easy to understand what Besiktas should have done to avoid the charge of “insufficient organisation”. I mean, how does one organise the pussycat community of Istanbul these days? Should a saucer of milk and tin of Whiskas be kept by the dugout just in case? And, all silliness aside, could Uefa really not have taken the lead from Bayern – whose supporters voted the feline as their man of the match – rather than directing a moment of harmless fun towards its sanctions department. The case will be heard on 31 May and, knowing what we do about Uefa’s disciplinary tariff, don’t rule anything out – who could really be shocked if a stray kitty ends up costing Besiktas more in fines than a Nazi salute or racist chant would?

Related: Mauricio Pochettino says Dele Alli dive was simple case of football trickery

Related: Arsène Wenger claims English players are now the 'masters' of diving

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• Government advice for supporters after spy-poisoning row• Fans going to quarter-final in Moscow may face anti-British feeling

Arsenal have encouraged their supporters to follow advice from the Foreign Office after the club was drawn to play CSKA Moscow in the Europa League quarter-finals – a pairing described as a “hot potato” by an Arsenal fans’ group.

The tie comes at a time of tension between the government and the Kremlin over the poisoning of the Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter with a nerve agent in Salisbury this month.

Related: Danny Welbeck double eases Arsenal past Milan and into quarter-finals

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Atlético Madrid will play Sporting and Arsenal go up against CSKA Moscow in the quarter-finals of the Europa League

12.21pm GMT

Arsenal have been drawn against CSKA Moscow in the quarter-finals of the Europa League.

The Gunners booked their place in the last eight by defeating AC Milan, winning the second leg 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday evening to seal a 5-1 aggregate victory.

12.14pm GMT

@Simon_Burnton They make sure a fuss over the @ChampionsLeague & @EuropaLeague draws. Should just be the 1st 8 journalist who enter the room pick out a name out of a hat and go &, without looking, stand next to one of the other 7. Draw done #ChampionsLeagueDraw #EuropaLeagueDraw

If they are going to make such a fuss over the draws, they should go the whole hog and organise some kind of complicated choreography. I personally would like to have seen a blindfolded Arsene Wenger shoot a sucker-tipped arrow towards a giant panel of potential opponents.

12.12pm GMT

The draw in full:

Arsenal v CSKA MoscowAtlético Madrid v SportingLazio v SalzburgLeipzig v Marseille

12.11pm GMT

Lazio have lost 100% of both their previous matches against Salzburg.

12.10pm GMT

An all-Iberian challenge. They have played twice in Europe before, and drew both times.

12.09pm GMT

Arsenal have avoided Atlético, as they wished. But don’t be too happy too soon: their record against CSKA is poor, and amounts to one draw and one defeat.

12.08pm GMT

Our first pairing! RB Leipzig have never played any of these teams before, so this is uncharted territory for them.

12.08pm GMT

The balls have been shuffled, and like ripe cherries hanging on a tree they are about to be picked.

12.06pm GMT

“I think football is diversity, and it’s always good to have teams from different countries representing football,” he says.

12.06pm GMT

Eric Abidal is indeed here, to do the actual ball-plucking bit. First, though, a humiliatingly superficial chat!

12.04pm GMT

“Uefa Europa League is really competitive and umpredictable, everyone has a chance to win and to qualify for next year’s Champions League,” he says.

12.04pm GMT

Uefa’s deputy general secretary, Giorgio Marchetti, arrives to take us through the actual drawy bit.

12.02pm GMT

And yes, we begin with a moody video package showing us the landmarks of Lyon and the landmark moments of the round of 16 (though Welbeck’s dive has not been included, puzzlingly).

12.00pm GMT

Look out for Éric Abidal, who as the official ambassador for the 2018 final in Lyon will presumably play a part in all this.

12.00pm GMT

Bong! The hour is upon us!

11.51am GMT

Less than 10 minutes before we get to find out what kind of slow-motion video package Uefa have prepared for this one.

“We would certainly want to avoid Atletico Madrid,” is as much as Arsene Wenger would say about his hopes for today’s draw. He won’t be the only one going into the draw with that hope uppermost in their mind.

11.46am GMT

Important diary update: the first leg of the quarter-finals will be played on 5 April, with the return a week later, on the 12th. Looking further ahead, the semi-finals are on 26 April and 3 May, and the final will be played in Lyon on 16 May.

11.34am GMT

Hello world!

Well this is splendidly old-fashioned. Eight teams, representing eight different nations. Just like the old days. There’s an Austrian team, a Spanish team, an Italian team, one each from England, Germany and France, and teams from Portugal and Russia. And any of those teams could face any of the other ones in the draw which, like a shoot-out in the wild west, will be full of potential danger and entirely free of rules. And like the shoot-out, at the end of all this some will fall, and some will survive, and ride off into the sunset on the back of a handsome steed. Donning their stetsons and loading up their six-shooters today will be, in order of current bookmaker favouritism:

9.33am GMT

Arsenal have been drawn against CSKA Moscow in the quarter-finals of the Europa League.

The Gunners booked their place in the last eight by defeating AC Milan, winning the second leg 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday evening to seal a 5-1 aggregate victory.

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