Arsenal: Identifying the Most Dangerous Players in Champions League Group F
The Champions League groups have been drawn, and Arsenal have been handed a daunting task.
The Gunners face ties with Marseille, Borussia Dortmund and Napoli. A couple of years ago they managed to progress from a group containing the first two sides, but Napoli will provide a new and difficult test.
All three teams contain a variety of stars who provide a considerable threat to Arsenal's hopes of progression.
Over the next three slides, we identify the opposition players most likely to cause Arsenal trouble on the European stage.
Marseille: Andre-Pierre Gignac
Andre-Pierre Gignac is something of a mercurial figure.
With his sturdy frame and infamous angry streak, Gignac is occasionally reminiscent of another former Marseille forward: Eric Cantona. It's not just Cantona's temper that Gignac shares—there are the flashes of genius too.
Gignac is a swaggering centre-forward. What he lacks in pace he makes up for in style.
This season, he looks leaner and more effective than ever. He has begun the Ligue 1 campaign with three goals in three games, firing Marseille to the top of the table, and earned a recall to Didier Deschamps' France squad.
A good Champions League campaign would see Gignac's star rise yet further.
Borussia Dortmund: Robert Lewandowski
Borussia Dortmund may have failed to keep Mario Gotze from Bayern Munich's clutches, but the fact they have held on to Robert Lewandowski will provide them with considerable consolation.
The Polish striker has entered the final year of his deal with Dortmund. At the end of the season he seems certain to walk away on a free transfer. However, in the meantime he will continue to do what he does best: score goals.
Lewandowski now has new signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang alongside him, creating space for him to wreak more havoc than ever before.
Lewandowski and Dortmund were so close to Champions League glory last season, losing in the final to a late Bayern goal. They'll be determined to go one better this time around.
Napoli: Gonzalo Higuain
Gonzalo Higuain could so easily have been lining up in Arsenal colours this season.
It's a decision Arsene Wenger may live to regret. Napoli snared Higuain, while Arsenal have ended up empty-handed.
If Higuain puts Arsenal to the sword in the Champions League, Wenger and Arsenal may never live it down.