Arsenal confirm Henrikh Mkhitaryan will not travel to Baku for Europa League final
Mkhitaryan will not travel due to fears over his safety
Henrikh Mkhitaryan will not travel with Arsenal to Baku, Azerbaijan for the Europa League final against Chelsea due to fears over his safety.
Armenian citizens are not permitted entry to Azerbaijan due to an ongoing conflict between the two nations, and having explored all options, the club have decided not to take the midfielder as part of their squad.
Arsenal have released a statement expressing their disappointment at having to make such a decision.
"We are very disappointed to announce that Henrikh Mkhitaryan will not be travelling with the squad for our Uefa Europa League final against Chelsea," the statement reads.
"We have thoroughly explored all the options for Micki to be part of the squad but after discussing this with Micki and his family we have collectively agreed he will not be in our travelling party.
"We have written to Uefa expressing our deep concerns about this situation. Micki has been a key player in our run to the final so this is a big loss for us from a team perspective.
"We’re also very sad that a player will miss out on a major European final in circumstances such as this, as it is something that comes along very rarely in a footballer’s career.
"Micki will continue to be part of our preparations until we depart for Baku at the weekend."
Mkhitaryan's safety is not the only controversy to taint this year's Europa League final. Fans are facing a logistical nightmare in travelling to Baku, with no direct flights from London available as well the dismal ticket allocation of 6,000 per team.