In Depth

Arsenal draw AC Milan in the Europa League - how the fans reacted

Gunners are handed a tough task against Gennaro Gattuso’s Milan in the last 16

If Arsenal are to win the Europa League – and qualify for next season’s Champions League – they will first have to get past AC Milan after being drawn against the Italians in the last 16 of the competition. 

The standout tie of the Europa League round of 16 will see the Gunners head to the San Siro for the first leg on Thursday, 8 March (6pm kick-off UK time) followed by the return match at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday, 15 March (8.05pm). 

Arsene Wenger’s side were given a scare in the last-32 against Swedish opponents Ostersunds and will now face a Milan team that’s been on a fine run of form since club legend Gennaro Gattuso took over as manager in November.

Gattuso, who replaced Vincenzo Montella, has led Milan on an unbeaten run of ten matches. They reached the Europa League last-16 with a 4-0 aggregate win against Bulgarian side Ludogorets.

The last-16 draw had a number of strong teams involved, including Borussia Dortmund, who play Salzburg, and Atletico Madrid, who will face Lokomotiv Moscow.

But for fans across Europe the AC Milan vs. Arsenal tie is the one that everyone’s talking about today. We take a look at how football fans and pundits reacted to the draw…

Some Arsenal fans may not be happy.

The perfect response.

If it was 2011 this fan would be excited.

It’s a 50/50 contest.

“Wenger must curse his luck,” says the London Evening Standard’s James Olley.

The teams are not as good as they were.

Two great sides… 15 years ago.

The “Italian Arsenal” against the “English Milan”.

From Zlatan and Van Persie to today’s stars...

An easy win for Arsenal?

A battle of equals.

The last time the two sides played it was a classic.

Europa League round of 16 draw in full

  • Lazio vs. Dynamo Kiev 
  • RB Leipzig vs. Zenit St Petersburg 
  • Atletico Madrid vs. Lokomotiv Moscow 
  • CSKA Moscow vs. Lyon 
  • Marseille vs. Athletic Bilbao   
  • Sporting Lisbon vs. Viktoria Plzen 
  • Borussia Dortmund vs. Salzburg 
  • AC Milan vs. Arsenal
When will the games take place?

Europa League last-16 first-leg ties will be played on 8 March and the second legs are on 15 March.

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