Wenger: We have no other choice
After losing 3-1 to Liverpool at the weekend, Arsenal sit in fifth place in the Premier League and therefore outside the automatic Champions League qualification places. All is not well for the Londoners at the moment as they prepare for the second leg of their Champions League last 16 match against FC Bayern. A 5-1 defeat in the first leg hasn’t helped their cause and the Gunners must now chase a four-goal deficit on Tuesday evening (live ticker and Webradio commentary from 20:45 CET).
“It’s a little bit tense,” said captain Per Mertesacker describing the mood in the squad, “but that is normal when you have a stretch like this. We want to change that but it’ll be very difficult against Bayern. We need to get our fans back on board.” The German international was in a fighting mood.
Mertesacker could not take part in Munich, and now his compatriot Mesut Özil will miss the match at the Emirates Stadium. He’s not physically fit enough after an illness, as Arsène Wenger explained. Yet despite all this bad news, the French manager sees one advantage in their situation.
“We have no other choice but to attack and try to score,” said Wenger, who has great respect for Bayern. “They’re one of the best if not the best teams in Europe, which makes the whole thing very difficult.” Regardless of the final result, the 67 year-old wants his players to leave the pitch with their heads held high, because “our pride and honour is at stake.” For that, he only has one requirement: “I want to see a team that’s fighting.”