Winner takes all for Arsenal and Paris

Arsenal FC and Paris Saint-Germain both confirmed their qualification for the knockout rounds on matchday four, so the winner of this encounter will finish first in Group A.

• On 13 September the teams drew 1-1 in France, Alexis Sánchez equalising for the visitors after Edinson Cavani had scored just 44 seconds in – Paris’ fastest-ever UEFA Champions League goal. Marco Verratti and Olivier Giroud were sent off in added time.


Previous meetings
• The sides’ only previous meeting before this season came in the semi-finals of the 1993/94 European Cup Winners’ Cup, when George Graham’s Arsenal edged through 2-1.

• A 1-1 draw in the French capital, in which Ian Wright’s first-half goal was cancelled out by David Ginola for Artur Jorge’s team, set the Gunners up for their aggregate victory, secured by Kevin Campbell’s seventh-minute winner in London. Arsenal went on to beat Parma FC 1-0 in the final.

• The Highbury line-ups on 12 April 1994 were:
Arsenal: Seaman, Dixon, Bould, Adams, Winterburn (Keown 84), Jensen, Selley, Davis (Hillier 75), Campbell, Smith, Wright.
Paris: Lama, Sassus (Llacer 78), Roche, Le Guen, Colleter, Raymundo, Fournier, Guérin, Souza (Gravelaine 77), Filho, Ginola.

Match background

Arsenal
• On matchday two the Gunners beat FC Basel 1893 2-0. In their 19th successive group stage campaign they then beat PFC Ludogorets Razgrad 6-0 at home and recovered a two-goal deficit in the Sofia return to emerge 3-2 winners.

• In each of the last six seasons Arsenal have fallen in the round of 16, going down 5-1 on aggregate to FC Barcelona in 2015/16 (0-2 home, 1-3 away). In their group home matches last term they first lost 3-2 to Olympiacos FC before beating FC Bayern München 2-0 and GNK Dinamo Zagreb 3-0.

• The Barcelona reverse means Arsenal have lost seven and won nine of their last 17 home games in the competition proper.

• In the 2014/15 round of 16 second leg, their last encounter with a French side before this season, they lost 3-1 at home to AS Monaco FC with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain on target. They won 2-0 away (Giroud and Aaron Ramsey scoring) but it was not enough to keep them in the competition.

• Wenger’s record against clubs from his home country with the Gunners is W11 D5 L3.

• Arsenal’s home record against French teams is W5 D3 L3.

• If Arsenal win the group it will be the first time since 2011/12. Since 2000/01, when they began their run of consistent qualification from the initial group stage, they have won their section on eight occasions. They have finished second in the group in each of the other eight campaigns.

Paris
• On matchday two Paris overcame an early setback to run out 3-1 winners at Ludogorets, Cavani scoring twice in the second half. They then beat Basel 3-0 at home and 2-1 away, Thomas Meunier’s stunning late volley securing the win in Switzerland.

• The French champions went out in the quarter-finals to Manchester City FC last season, the fourth successive year they had met defeat at that stage.

• The teams drew 2-2 in Paris but PSG were beaten in the return, unable to repeat their success against another English opponent in the round of 16. A 2-1 win over Chelsea FC at the Parc des Princes was matched by the same score in London.

• In Group A Paris had set high standards, scoring 12 goals and conceding only one in an away defeat at Real Madrid CF. They won both their other group away games – scoring three without reply at FC Shakhtar Donetsk on matchday two and five at Malmö FF on matchday five.

• The Manchester City reverse ended a run of five games without defeat against Premier League opponents (W2 D3).

 • The Parisian club have played 18 matches against English sides with the record W6 D7 L5. Away it is W2 D3 L4.

• Unai Emery’s last encounter with English opponents, in May, brought him a notable success, guiding Sevilla FC to the UEFA Europa League crown for a third year in a row with a 3-1 win over Liverpool FC.

Coaches and player links
• Wenger, a former RC Strasbourg defender, started his coaching career at AS Nancy-Lorraine and Monaco, in France.

• Olivier Giroud was Ligue 1 top scorer when Montpellier lifted the French crown in 2011/12.

• Aaron Ramsey and Theo Walcott scored as Arsenal won 2-1 at Olympique de Marseille in the 2013/14 group stage. Ramsey also scored in Arsenal’s 1-0 victory at the Stade Vélodrome in the 2011/12 group stage.

• Also played in France:
Laurent Koscielny (EA Guingamp 2004–07, Tours FC, FC Lorient 2007–10)
Petr Čech (Stade Rennais FC 2002–04)
Francis Coquelin (FC Lorient 2010/11)
Mathieu Debuchy (LOSC Lille 2003–13, FC Girondins de Bordeaux 2016)
David Ospina (OGC Nice 2008–14)
Yaya Sanogo (AJ Auxerre 2009–13)
Jeff Reine-Adélaïde (RC Lens 2014/15)

• Played in England:
Ángel Di María (Manchester United FC 2014/15)
Hatem Ben Arfa (Newcastle United FC 2010–14, Hull City AFC 2014/15)

• Players who have played together:
Blaise Matuidi, Alphonse Areola Mathieu Debuchy, Laurent Koscielny, Olivier Giroud (France)
Jesé Santi Cazorla, Nacho Monreal, Héctor Bellerín (Spain)

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Article source: http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2017/matches/round=2000783/match=2019354/prematch/background/index.html?rss=2404583+Winner+takes+all+for+Arsenal+and+Paris

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