Arsène Wenger confident Arsenal can prosper from Champions League absence

Spanish winger Pedro returned to Chelsea training at the club's Cobham facility on Wednesday

The traditional curtain-raiser to the Premier League season is always a showcase for each side's new signings, and sunday will be a chance for many fans to get a first glimpse of Alexandre Lacazette and Alvaro Morata.

"Because the league is so physically hard, maybe it is very hard to cope with both", Wenger said.

"You can not go into the season and think that [you will get into the Champions League by winning the Europa League]".

Manager Arsene Wenger, somehow beginning his 22nd season in charge of the Gunners, is determined to keep his prized asset and will no doubt be hoping some early wins can persuade the Chilean to stay and ease the pressure before the "Wenger Out" brigade can get started. The bookmakers see Chelsea as clear second favourites behind Manchester City in the title betting this season (best price 7/2) but they are fancied at 6/5 with bet365 to beat Arsenal and start their season with more silverware.

"I will always play a team that has a good chance to win the next game", Wenger said.

"It happened sometimes that we rested players in the group stage of the Champions League to prepare for the next Premier League game, because every Premier League game is so hard".

The game is on Sunday afternoon, before the final of the Women's European Championships.

"I was always against it", Wenger told the Evening Standard. "That's why, when we voted in Geneva [for the route into the Champions League], I was always against it".

Victor Moses had been expected to miss Community Shield due to his red card in the FA Cup final, but will ultimately line up after the FA ruled his suspension would carry over instead to the first match of the Premier League season.

Games against Arsenal in part shaped Chelsea's Premier League title-winning season, when Conte revived the Blues from 10th the previous term. "I can understand that you want to kill me but, at the moment, I survive". The Gunners of course defeated their counterparts 2-1 in the last game they played there, with Alexis Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey firing them to FA Cup victory in May.

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