We have been drawn against Linkoping in the first round of the UEFA Women’s Champions League.
The Swedish club last played in the competition in 2018/19, where they reached the round of 16. They have reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League three times in their history: in 2010/11, 2014/15 and 2017/18.
Frida Maanum, Stina Blackstenius and Lina Hurtig, a familiar name to many of our Gunners, have all played for the Swedish side before. The last time we faced Linkoping in the Champions League in 2011, club legends Kim Little and Jen Beattie helped us achieve an away goals rule and progress to the semi-finals.
Our way to the group stage
The first qualifying round consists of two stages of knockout matches. Should we survive our clash with Linkoping on September 6, we will take on the winner of Paris FC v FC Kryvbas three days later for a place in Round 2.
The format of Round 2 differs in that we only have one opponent between us and the Champions League group stage, but we will have to play home and away games. Last year we entered the competition in round 2 of the qualification, where we beat Ajax 3-2.
The following teams are participating in this phase: Wolfsburg, Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, Sparta Praha, BK Häcken and Manchester United.
These knockout matches will take place in October and determine which 12 teams will join the automatic qualifiers Barcelona, Lyon, Bayern Munich and Chelsea in the group stage in November.
The draw in full
FC Twente (NED) vs SK Sturm Graz (AUT)
Levante UD (ESP) vs Stjarnan (ISL)
Juventus (ITA) vs WFC Okzhetpes (KAZ)
Eintracht Frankfurt (GER) vs 1. FC Slovakko (CZE)
Paris FC (FRA) vs FC Kryvbas (UKR)
Arsenal WFC (ENG) vs Linkoping FC (SWE)
Brondby IF (DEN) vs Celtic FC (SCO)
FC Minsk (BLR) vs Valerenga Football (NOR)
the rest of the tournament
Moving on to the group stage of the tournament, we will be back in action in the Champions League after the draw on October 20 in November. The performance dates are as follows:
Matchday 1: November 14/15
Matchday 2: November 22/23
Matchday 3: December 13/14
Matchday 4: December 20/21
Matchday 5: January 24/25
Matchday 6: January 30/31
Draw quarter-finals and semi-finals
February 6 – Nyon
First leg: March 19/20
Second leg: March 27/28
First leg: April 20/21
Second leg: April 27/28
Final (San Mames, Bilbao)
24, 25 or 26 May TBD
Copyright 2023 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotes from this article is granted provided www.arsenal.com is cited as the source.
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