Time is now to back Arsenal in Champions League

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Arsenal’s odds to win the Champions League have been cut to 22/1 from 33/1 after progressing past Udinese into the group stages of the competition and value could still be found backing them at their current price.

The Udinese victory means that Arsenal will compete in the Champions League group stages for the 14th consecutive season and also ensures that they will be placed in pot one for the draw.

This is significant because this means that they avoid the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich in the group stages, while the rules of the competition mean they cannot face any English team at this stage.

Therefore, they will also evade Manchester City, who are the big team from the third pot of the draw.

The nightmare scenario for Arsenal will be to be pitted against AC Milan, Zenit Saint Petersburg and Borussia Dortmund, although the chances of them being drawn in what would be called the ‘Group of Death’ are mighty slim.

There is every chance that Arsenal will be handed a far easier passage into the second round, particularly with the third pool containing Ajax, Basel and BATE Borisov, while Champions League debutants Viktoria Plzen, Otelul Galati and Trabzonspor are in the fourth pot.

With Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas now having left Arsenal, all of the drama at the club should be over for the season and they can now settle down and get their primary focus back on playing football.

Attitude within the camp should also improve and if Arsenal can steer clear of a tough group, which they have managed to do successfully for the last decade, then there is every chance that after the draw their Champions League odds will shorten again.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.