Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted that his side are physically and mentally drained heading into the final weeks of the season.
The Gunners are of course currently experiencing the exhausting schedule that competing in the Europa League demands.
Playing each Thursday in Europe and then Sunday in the Premier League has taken its toll on many English clubs over the years.
For example Arsenal only arrived back in London at 5am on Friday after their Europa League quarter-final against CSKA Moscow in Russia and will only have 48 hours to prepare for their next league fixture away to Newcastle on Sunday.
Speaking to the press ahead of the Gunners clash against Rafa Benitez’s rejuvenated Geordies, Wenger revealed that his squad is really starting to feel the effects of such a demanding schedule.
“Honestly, it is very difficult,” Wenger said.
“We land at 5am and we play Sunday morning. And the second thing that is very difficult is that when you play [in the league], everybody else has already played.”
“Not only are you physically very jaded but also you are under huge pressure each time to win the game. It is maybe mentally tougher than physically.”
“[Fatigue] is a little bit of a concern because for long periods now, with the League Cup in the middle of the season, it is a bit difficult,”
“You look at [Manchester] City and they look a bit like that in the second half of games recently. Fortunately next week we can recover. I rotate as much as I can, unfortunately some players have to play all the games.”
Due to fact Arsenal also reached the Carabao Cup final they have now played a massive 52 games already this season.
Wenger’s side were today drawn against favourites Atletico Madrid in the semi-final of the Europa League with the ties due to be played on 26 April and 3 May.
However, things will not get any easier for the Gunners as they will have to travel to Old Trafford to face Manchester United on the 29 April just a few days after the first leg, which will mean they will surely have to rest players for that fixture to prioritise reaching the final of the Europa League as it is there only realistic chance of reaching the Champions League next season.