Arsenal have avoided UEFA punishment after failing to make their Champions League press conference

Arsenal have avoided UEFA punishment after failing to make their Champions League press conference

Arsenal have been let off the hook by UEFA after they were unable to make their scheduled Champions League press conference.

The Gunners played their first Champions League fixture since 2017 on 20 September when they defeated PSV Eindhoven 4-0 at the Emirates.

Their next clash in Group is against Ligue One side RC Lens on Tuesday but preparations have been less than ideal.

As per The Sun, Arsenal were stuck at Luton Airport for more than four hours due a storm in the south of England.

Their private plane was unable to take off until conditions improved and so a lengthy delay occurred.

Having been perched in a private lounge, Arsenal eventually flew out to Lille at around 9pm, before making a 40 minute journey to Lens.

But Mikel Arteta's press conference had to be cancelled completely because the lateness caused a veer off schedule.

As a result, a UEFA rule was broken as article 73 states: “Each club must hold a pre-match press conference the day before the match.

“Each press conference must be attended by the head coach of the team and at least one player. If the head coach is suspended for the match, clubs have the option of replacing him at the pre-match press conference with the assistant coach."

Arsenal have avoided punishment from the European football governing body because it was out of their control.

Newcastle were also given a reprieve last month as storms meant Eddie Howe was two hours late for his pre-AC Milan press conference ahead of their first Champions League game for 20 years.

Arsenal defender William Saliba commented on the situation, saying: "I don’t know what’s happening. Maybe because it’s raining in England or France so we cannot fly and we are still in London.

“First of all we have to get to Lens but I’m confident the delay won’t affect us and we will give our best in the game."

Arsenal lead Group by two points after one matchday, with Lens drawing 1-1 with Sevilla in their opener.

The North London side will be debuting their third kit in the fixture.
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