Arsène Wenger’s side could use the Europa League as a viable route in to next season’s Champions League, with the winner of the competition earning a spot in Europe’s elite competition next year. This is the first season Arsenal will not play in the Champions League since 1997 while they reached the final of the Uefa Cup in 2000, when they were defeated 4-1 on penalties in the final by Galatasaray in 2000, in Copenhagen.
Everton, who completed their play-off victory over Hajduk Split of Croatia on Thursday, are in Europe for the first time since 2014-15, when they reached the round of 16 before being knocked out by Dynamo Kiev. Ronald Koeman’s side will face Lyon – the host of this season’s final – Serie A’s Atalanta and Apollon Limassol of Cyprus in a bid to reach the knockout stages.
Europa League draw in full
Group A: Villarreal, Maccabi Tel-Aviv, Astana, Slavia Prague.
Group B: Dynamo Kiev, Young Boys, Partizan Belgrade, Skenderbeu.
Group C: Braga, Ludogorets, Hoffenheim, Istanbul Basaksehir.
Group D: Milan, Austria Vienna, Rijeka, AEK Athens.
Group E: Lyon, Everton, Atalanta, Apollon.
Group F: Copenhagen, Lokomotiv Moscow, Sheriff Tiraspol, Zlin.
Group G: Viktoria Plzen, FCSB, Hapoel Beer-Sheva, Lugano.
Group H: Arsenal, BATE Borisov, Cologne, Crvena Zvezda.
Group I: Salzburg, Marseille, Vitoria SC, Konyaspor.
Group J: Athletic Bilbao, Hertha Berlin, Zorya Luhansk, Ostersund.
Group K: Lazio, Nice, Zulte Waregem, Vitesse.
Group L: Zenit St Petersburg, Real Sociedad, Rosenborg, Vardar Skopje.