Per Mertesacker joined Arsene Wenger during his press conference ahead of the Bayern Munich match.
Arsenal host the German giants tonight hoping to overturn a 5-1 deficit, which isn’t exactly looking likely considering Bayern are on fire right now and the Gunners… well the Gunners aren’t. Plus, no side has ever overturned a four-goal deficit in the competition.
Although Mertesacker has yet to play this season following knee surgery over the summer, the centreback spoke about the importance of turning things around, starting with the match at the Emirates. The team need, he says, to give the fans something to be proud of.
“I think we saw on a lot of occasions that we were absolutely not ready for a fight, and that’s what I want to see tomorrow: that we are up for a fight, to challenge something,” the German said.
“We need to turn it around. That is really the focus, to come back to our strength.
“I think it’s up to us to show a different face. That is really something we are going to demand because we literally blew it away in the second half [at the Allianz Arena]. So it’s really down to us now to make the first step to make our fans proud of ourselves again. That is really something that we need the emphasis on.
“I expect a lot from our players performance-wise, that is what we demand. We wanted to be in the Champions League, we are still in there so let’s go for it.
“We played hard last season to get there and now this is our chance to get everyone back [onside]. But it is down to focusing on the next opposition.”
You know, call be a pessimist but I think we can probably say there’s no turning around the Bayern tie. Saying that, there’s still time to salvage something elsewhere. Arsenal are still in the FA Cup with non-League Lincoln City to face at home and hopefully we can secure a top four finish.
It’s not over until it’s over, folks.