Champions League

Wenger: Barca match 'an opportunity'

2016-03-14 10:16
Arsene Wenger (TEAMtalk)

London - Arsene Wenger admitted that he faces a tough job lifting his Arsenal players for this week's trip to Barcelona following his side's FA Cup elimination at the hands of Watford.

Saturday's 2-1 home loss to Quique Sanchez Flores's side in the quarter-finals ended Arsenal's two-year hold on the competition and they will now focus on attempting to overturn a 2-0 deficit when they visit Camp Nou for Wednesday's Champions League last 16 second-leg match.

The odds suggest Arsenal will return from Barcelona having exited another competition, adding to the pressure building ahead of this weekend's Premier League visit to Everton, when they will attempt to maintain their slender title hopes.

The loss to Watford has done nothing to strengthen belief and Wenger said: "It's always difficult after a defeat, but it is our job to prepare for the next game.

"Our long run in the FA Cup has come to an end in a very sad way because I don't think we deserve to lose this game."

He added: "We have shown we can respond always. I think this team has a great spirit, a very strong attitude.

"They play at the moment with the idea we cannot afford any result, you know. We have an opportunity to show on Wednesday night we are up to it.

"We won't rest players. We want to make the impossible possible and we know we play against a very strong, strong side and it's important we go there and focus and show a very good response."

Second-half goals from Odion Ighalo and Adlene Guedioura set Watford on course for the semi-finals and Danny Welbeck's 88th-minute reply came too late to spark an Arsenal comeback.

 

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