Arsenal has one-to-two chance against Bayren Munich at Tuesday’s Champions League
ESPN – Arsene Wenger wants Arsenal to play with “lucid rage” against Bayern Munich on Tuesday but admitted his team only has “a one or two-percent chance” to advance.
Arsenal must overcome a 5-1 deficit at the Emirates after their second-half collapse in Munich last month in the first leg of their round-of-16 tie. And they’ll be without Mesut Ozil, who is still regaining match fitness after an illness, while the status of Alexis Sanchez remains unclear after he was dropped to the bench against Liverpool on Saturday.
But Wenger hasn’t given up hope of turning things around and wants his players to use their frustration in a positive way on the pitch.
“What you expect is that you go out there with a mixture of lucid rage. Total commitment, but not a silly one,” he said. “Look we missed 45 minutes at Bayern Munich and we have an opportunity to put it right. Let’s not fool ourselves, we have a one or two-percent chance. But you never know. That’s why we have to focus on the quality of our performance and our commitment.”
And Wenger pointed to Paris Saint-Germain’s 4-0 win over Barcelona in the first leg of their tie as proof that even Europe’s top clubs can have an off night. Arsenal topped their group ahead of PSG after holding the French club to two draws.
Arsene Wenger says Arsenal must play with lucid rage against Bayern Munich.
“We finished top of the group, PSG finished second and they beat Barcelona 4-0. Why? Because Barcelona missed the game completely. We have to give our best,” Wenger said. “It’s in a difficult climate at the moment because we have just lost at Liverpool so it’s a bit more tense. So we have to earn our freedom to play because at the moment we play a little bit with the handbrake. In this game, maybe because we have nothing to lose, we can let the handbrake off and play with more freedom.”
Arsenal look set to exit the Champions League in the round of 16 for the seventh year running, and at a time when their Premier League title challenge has already fallen apart and reports of a row between Sanchez and Wenger led to further turmoil after the 2-1 loss at Liverpool.
But Wenger said the negativity surrounding the club gets exaggerated at times, and couldn’t help but make an appararent dig at North London rivals Tottenham, who were the only English team eliminated in the group stages of this year’s competition.
“Yeah, everything is a negative at the moment. Basically the teams that have gone out in the group stage they are happy you know, but we have gone through and we are in crisis,” Wenger said. “We failed in the second half at Bayern Munich and we have paid for it.
“Having said that, we didn’t play against a weak team as well. We played against a team who fights to win the competition.”