Per Mertesacker believes Arsenal can beat any side in the world and can consign their first-leg disaster against Monaco to the history books.
Speaking at the pre-game press conference, the BFG said
“We know that [in the] first leg, we weren’t really up for it mentally.
“From the start, you could feel that and, at times, we could feel that there was a bit of a pressure and we couldn’t cope with that. But we feel like, especially after that game, we moved on and improved a lot. That is why we are very confident that, even away from home, we can beat any team in the world.”
Arsenal will need to make history if they are progress as no other side has been able to overturn a two-goal deficit in the knockout phases but the side are full of confidence and believe they can do it.
Form would certainly seem to be on their side – they’ve won every game since the debacle at the Emirates and have won 12 of their last 14 games in all competitions.
Needing to score at least three and hope that they can keep Monaco out it is certainly a big ask but surely one of these times Arsenal can do it despite giving themselves a mountain to climb from the first leg.
Wenger concurs that history is not on their side but has confidence in his players.
“The statistics are against us.
“The result in the first leg is against us. We are conscious about that. But no matter how big the percentage is, we have to give absolutely everything to make the stats lie. That’s our desire and it’s our belief that we can do it.
“Ideally, you always want to score early goals but I believe that you have just to play with full power and not forget your organisation or your structure in the team. The goals come when they come. Focus on the quality of your game on both sides, defensively and offensively.”