Football: Arsenal drawn with Frankfurt in Europa League group stage, United face long journeys

The Europa League 2019-20 Group Stage dra​w ceremony in Monaco on Aug 30, 2019.
The Europa League 2019-20 Group Stage dra​w ceremony in Monaco on Aug 30, 2019.PHOTO: REUTERS

MONACO (REUTERS) - Europa League runners-up Arsenal and semi-finalists Eintracht Frankfurt were grouped together in the draw for this season's competition, which was held in Monaco on Friday (Aug 30).

Frankfurt and Arsenal, who lost to winners Chelsea in the semis and final respectively last season, were joined by Belgian side Standard Liege and Portugal's Vitoria SC in Group F.

Manchester United, winners of the competition in 2017, will have a lot of travelling to do to Eastern Europe and Central Asia after being drawn alongside Kazakhstan side Astana, Serbia's Partizan Belgrade and Dutch side AZ Alkmaar in Group L.

Sevilla, who won a hat-trick of titles between 2014 and 2016, were drawn in an easier Group A with Apoel Nicosia (Cyprus), Qarabag (Azerbaijan) and F91 Dudelange (Luxembourg).

Wolves, who went through three rounds of qualifying to reach the group stage, were drawn with Turkish side Besiktas, Portugal's Braga and Slovakia's Slovan Bratislava in Group K.

Steven Gerrard's Rangers, who were handed another partial stadium ban on Friday for their fans' racist behaviour, drew Portugal's Porto, Switzerland's Young Boys and Dutch side Feyenoord in Group G, while Scottish rivals Celtic drew Italy's Lazio, France's Rennes and Romania's CFR Cluj in Group E.

Former Chelsea forward Eden Hazard, who moved to Real Madrid in the close season, was named the Europa League player of the year for the 2018-19 campaign after he led the London side to the final, where he scored twice in the 4-1 win over Arsenal.

Group B: Dynamo Kiev, FC Copenhagen, Malmo, Lugano.

Group C: FC Basel, Krasnodar, Getafe, Trabzonspor.

Group D: Sporting Lisbon, PSV Eindhoven, Rosenborg, LASK.

Group H: CSKA Moscow, Ludogorets, Espanyol, Ferencvaros.

Group I: Wolfsburg, Gent, St Etienne, Olexandriya.

Group J: AS Roma, Borussia Moenchengladbach, Istanbul, Basaksehir Wolfsberger.