Per Mertesacker believes that Arsenal just need to relax a bit and the rest will follow against Barcelona.
The German defended our performance against Watford, in which we lost 2-1 and got knocked out of the FA Cup for the first time since 2013, but did acknowledge that we need to chill out a bit in front of goal.
“You have to give us credit because we kept going against Watford and created chance after chance,” he said.
“But at the moment we lack that killer instinct. We need to work on that if we want to be successful in the Premier League and the Champions League.
“We were not relaxed against Watford. Even in the box we played and always found good positions, with the man in the right position but we lacked that relaxation even to hit the target. We did not do that sometimes. We missed it too often.”
The centre-back added, “We cannot afford to concede against Barcelona. We have to go there and try to attack, no matter what, that is the only possibility we have. We can be fortunate to have such big game in front of us.
“They are the ultimate team at the minute, so we are straight away under pressure and we have to go away from home. I think the confidence is there, we are just missing something.
“The season is not over. We play in a confident way, we maybe lack that bit at the end. The desire to play together and to be good as a team is there, you can feel that.”
We’re going into the match at Camp Nou as complete underdogs. If we were favourites to lose at the Emirates, we’re pretty much odds-on to get humiliated in Barcelona. Is there a chance? Of course there is. And I wouldn’t deny anyone their right to be optimistic, especially considering we haven’t had much to celebrate or enjoy recently. However, from my point of view, I see the trip to Spain as nothing more than a waste of time. This isn’t my usual mentality but the loss to Watford has done something to me.
But will I still be watching and cheering our team on against Cesc’s old mates? You bet I will.