Wenger: Europa League is not a useless competition

The Gunners boss has defended the integrity of Europe's second-tier club tournament, but stated his side want to be involved in the Champions League next season
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has defended the integrity of the Europa League, stating that the tournament "is not useless", but stated he wants his team to be playing in the Champions League next season.

Only a win over West Brom come Sunday will guarantee the Gunners a spot in next season's Champions League, anything less will potentially cast Wenger’s side into Uefa’s second-tier competition, the Europa League.

"The Europa League final was a fantastic game," he told the Daily Mirror. "Atletico Madrid against Athletic Bilbao was fantastic to watch, much better than many Champions League games.

"Personally, I don't feel it's a useless competition. What's a useless competition for you? For me, a good competition is when you see two good teams play a good game. I watched Bilbao and Atletico Madrid and I watched the whole game, didn't miss a second.

"You see a fantastic football team. That's what competition has to produce - fantastic football games. There are some boring Champions League games but of course you want to be in the Champions League.

"When you play Thursday night and Sunday it's exactly the same as Wednesday night and Saturday. If you ask me if we prefer the Champions League to Europa League then you are completely right.

"We want to be in the Champions League, we don't want to be in the Europa League. You play where you have to and it's better to play there than not at all."