UEFA ruling set to affect Arsenal in the Uefa Champions League
Ahead of Thursday’s Champions League draw, we take a look at a UEFA ruling that could affect Kieran Tierney who has joined Real Sociedad on loan from Arsenal. Kieran Tierney could be back at Arsenal sooner than expected if the Champions League draw unfolds in a certain way.
Set to compete with Diego Rico and Aihen Munoz for the left-back birth, the added bonus for Tierney is Champions League football will be available to him this season. A competition that has given the defender his toughest game to date, but one he’s not played in since leaving Celtic in the summer of 2019.
“He was so quick,” the 26-year-old said of Kylian Mbappe when speaking on Arsenal’s YouTube channel as he recalled being on the wrong end of a 7-1 loss at the hands of Paris Saint-Germain during the 2017/18 campaign. “It was the toughest game I’ve ever played in my career, against Mbappe and Dani Alves down that side.”
Should this be the case then not so long after departing the Emirates Stadium – albeit temporarily – Tierney could line up against some familiar faces and close friends – as UEFA rules – unlike Premier League – allow players to face their parent clubs. So, unless Arsenal have inserted a clause in the loan contract that states otherwise, the Scot will be free to play in this scenario.
As a result, the Gunners are perhaps running the risk of being haunted by their own player in the Champions League. This has happened a number of times down the years with Philippe Coutinho scoring for Bayern Munich in an 8-2 thrashing of then-parent club Barcelona as the most recent example.
On the other hand, Joao Cancelo featured for Bayern Munich against Manchester City in the quarter-final last season and witnessed his parent club ease through 4-1 on aggregate en route to lifting the famous trophy for the first time as part of a historic treble and didn’t receive a winner’s medal either despite featuring in the group phase.
Real Sociedad’s Champions League pot will be confirmed at the conclusion of Tuesday and Wednesday night’s play-off round ties and if kept apart from Celtic – also to be in Pot 3 or 4 – then the draw could pit Tierney against not only his parent club but his boyhood club too.