The Red-whites travel to London for the UEFA Europa League Quarter-final again after two years. In 2018/19 they played future winners Chelsea and the away game ended up in a 3-4 defeat after a 0-1 defeat at home. This time Slavia will face Arsenal in the 2020/21 UEL Quarter-final first leg. The game will be played on Thursday, 8 April, from 9 pm CET (8 pm local time).
Manager Jindřich Trpišovský and his coaching team will miss two centre-backs. Ondřej Kúdela and Simon Deli do not travel with the team due to health problems.
Houštecký: Missing two key players
“It is quite a blow for us,” assistant coach Zdeněk Houštecký commented on the absence of two important players. “Kudy was the pillar of our line-up, he was playing in great form. We were glad he played in Wales and we were sure he will fly with us for Arsenal. But he caught a cold with high fevers and a hit in his nose was followed by inflammation, so, after a medical examination he could not travel with us. Unfortunately, Simon returned with Covid after an international break. We will miss these two key players, but I believe we can replace them, and we will be prepared,” Houštecký said.
On the other hand, midfielder Petr Ševčík is back after an injury and played 33 minutes against Brno in the last league round. Goalkeeper Ondřej Kolář also travels with the team. “At the moment, we cannot imagine him starting against Arsenal. But he is with the team anyway, we will see. We are glad Petr Ševčík made a league start in Brno, he is in full training now. He felt good on the pitch, there was no shortness of the breath, he is ready fort he game,” Slavia coach added.
Hromada: A great challenge ahead
“Arsenal was a dream, not only for me, but for everybody else in the team. They might not experience their best years in the Premier League now, but it is still one of the world top teams. It is a great challenge for us. We are looking forward to playing there and we want to fight for the next round,” Jakub Hromada said.
“My biggest dream came true last week when I started for the national team of Slovakia. And the second biggest dream was Arsenal. As a child, you dream about playing for them. And then you dream about playing against them. It can be fulfilled now. I believe that, if the manager chooses me, I will enjoy the game and help the team,” Slavia midfielder added before leaving for the Prague Airport.