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Avoidable Henrikh Mkhitaryan issue at heart of Arsenal's Europa League final problems

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After Atletico Madrid's state of the art stadium, the Wanda Metropolitano, beat Baku's Olympic Stadium to host this month's Champions League final, UEFA restarted the bidding process for the Europa League final which saw the 68,700 capacity stadium in Azerbaijan beat off Seville and Istanbul However, serious questions are raised as to whether Baku is fit to host such an important football match - let alone whether their bid dossier was sufficiently scrutinised by UEFA.

Ahead of the 2019 Europa League final Arsenal and Chelsea fans have one question: Just why did UEFA choose to host such a showpiece event in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan.

As criticism grows of UEFA's decision to host the Europa League final in Baku - along with concerns over travel arrangements and ticket allocations and player safety concerns - football.london takes an in-depth look at the main issues surrounding the match.



Heydar Aliyev International Airport is the only international airport within easy reach of Baku.

For example, in the 'mobility' section of the document, Baku’s bid for the Europa League final reads: “Due to its geographical location, most foreign spectators would arrive in Baku by air, resulting in high demand for flights.

All of which raises the question posed at the start of this article: Just why did UEFA chose Baku to host the 2019 Europa League final when it quite clearly is not fit to do so... Arsenal say they are "bitterly disappointed" to only be able to bring a maximum of 6,000 fans to Baku for the Europa League Final as travel chaos engulfs their preparations for the game against Chelsea on May 29.

The in-and outbound airport capacity meets the requirements.” Whereas the same section detailed in their ill-fated bid for the Champions League final contains a subtle but vitally important distinction when it states: “The in-and outbound airport capacity theoretically meets the requirements.” Note the use of the word 'theoretically'.
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