Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Arteta: Arsenal’s Champions League record is irrelevant, we have a point to prove

Mikel Arteta says Arsenal’s poor record in the Champions League knockout stages is “irrelevant” and that he’s not spoken to his players about it in the build-up to tomorrow’s first-leg clash with Porto.

During Arsene Wenger’s tenure, Arsenal exited the Champions League at the round of 16 on seven consecutive occasions between 2011 and 2017.

“I haven’t had any conversation related to that,” said Arteta when asked about the club’s record.

“They [the players] know that we haven’t been in the competition for seven years obviously because some of them were here and they know the story.

“They know that what happened in the past is irrelevant, it’s the challenge and the ambition that we have now to go through and and deserve to be through.”

The manager also played down suggestions that the Gunners teams he featured in had a “mental block” in the competition, instead joking that the draw wasn’t very kind to them.

“Someone called Messi was another obstacle that we faced twice, and Bayern Munich!

“This competition is what it is, individual quality is extremely important and it comes down to sometimes details, you are through or you are out and you have to be really prepared and you need your players at your best when the occasion arises and tomorrow for sure you’re gonna need that.”

While there’s no getting away from the current squad’s lack of experience at Europe’s top table, Arteta is heartened by the eagerness of his players to stamp their authority on the competition.

“We don’t have the experience, that’s the reality,” he noted.

“95% of the players haven’t played this competition, they have never played the last 16, I haven’t [as a coach].

“But we have so much enthusiasm and energy and willingness, and a point to prove as well that we are good enough.

“We want to be there and that’s our desire and that’s the passion that we’re gonna be playing the game tomorrow.”

The manager also insists his side won’t underestimate their opponents on take the first leg lightly despite being firm favourites to progress.

“Yeah, because you know how tricky it is,” he said.

“You’ve been two or three months out of the competition and you’re going to face now a very different stage of it with all the teams that are very, very top, where you have little time to prepare the games and the ball is rolling and you have to be very ready because the teams are very, very prepared and really dangerous.”

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Mzito the Heavy Gooner

I love his optimistic attitude and the energy it transmits to his young charges. True we have no experience in the competition but we’re here now and experience comes with showing up and standing up to be counted? Come On you blazing red hot Gunners!

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Keeep this form up and be lucky with fitness, I see no reason why Arsenal can’t lift the trophy at Wembley.
PL or CL, if we could get one this season, which would you guys prefer? O6 still hurts, fans ridicule us for never winning the CL, but the PL is the one I want

Arsepedant

I am greedy and I want them both. Keep playing like we have since the midseason break and there’s no reason we can’t win both.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

That’s the mentality!

Matthinc

PL definitely though CL would be amazing icing on that cake

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Definitely agree. Like I said, I want the PL but I’m pretty certain that if we win the CL, I would shed a few tears😀

Der32

I’ll take the CL. It’s the one trophy we are missing and would top anything else for me.

Gunner1971

For me, PL would be more satisfying, CL more exciting.
Also feels better to win PL first then win CL, a bit like having dinner then dessert rather than the other way around.

Fezec

The premier league

We haven’t won it in too long.

I want to win it while Klopp and Pep are still there to stop any “you only won it because…” comments.

You can be lucky to win the CL (Chelsea) but you have to be great to win the league.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Yes you know that’s what the haters would say. Sort of like Liverpool’s Covid title winning season

Gunner1971

Great point, but the proper haters will do it anyway i.e. Pep/Klopp weren’t at their best etc.

Ebo

CL 100%, we’ve never won it and it’s the only thing keeping us from being considered one of the top clubs in the world. And it’s generally the harder one to win, even if you have the beat team, just ask Pep. We should take advantage of this year where most of the top clubs aren’t quite at their best, Madrid still don’t have Mbappe, Bayern aren’t quite Bayern, Liverpool arent there, we’ve shown we can beat City, and so on. This won’t be the case every year.

Henkamp

CL for me. A club of Arsenal’s stature should not be getting ridiculed for having never won that prestigious trophy. Also, it opens the door to win more trophies (super cup, club word cup) for our young squad. That’s how you cultivate the hunger to win more.

TeeCee

Yup. Getting ridiculed for not winning a trophy feels awfully sp*rsy.
If that’s happening, it needs to stop.

Fatgooner

Our Champions League record is absolute sh1t. We are easily the biggest club in Europe never to have won it. And just ONE final appearance is a complete joke.

And look how long it’s been since we’ve even been in it. How has it taken so long to even qualify?

Tell you what: if Arteta wins it then I’ll never criticise him again. And he could claim to be the greatest Arsenal manager ever!

A Different George

That should just about make Arteta actually want to win it.

Dr Zebra

Even more excited now that we win it then! Haha a uncritical Fats seems less likely than us lifting the CL trophy!

Dr. Gooner

That’s the stick that idiots online use to beat Arsenal with anytime we do something nice or praise worthy. Every club has something others can use to try to knock it down, just so you don’t feel as good about supporting as you should. It’s basic playground bully behavior. Don’t be part of it.

Goonerrific

Ah come on, we’ve all gone down the “but did you do it unbeaten?” route im sure.

Santi’s Phonebox

Fats has laid down his marker. Good man. He wants the win so bad he’s willing to stop bitching about the manager which is one of his favorite activities. Get in.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Fat boy. Even Liverpool was a consistent Uefa team in the 2000’s, at one point. Relax buddy

Ebo

Wow, when you put it like that, seven years of last 16, then seven years of Europa/nothing. It’s like that bible verse with Joseph in Egypt and the 7 fat cows followed by the 7 lean and ugly cows, only in our case the 7 ugly cows were eaten by 7 even uglier ones, and these were some highly disagreeable, hideously unattractive cows.

Time for some beautiful fat cattle to come our way.

Marquis Estate Gunner

Moo

Blackpool Albert

Moo too.

Fezec

Möösut Özil.

Declan Fried Rice with Egg

Moostafi

Ebo

Moo Elneny

Matthinc

Martinelli is going to dominate for us in Europe i can feel it. This is his competition.

Dr. Gooner

Porto… always very, very difficult opponents on European nights at home. We struggled against similar caliber Portugese opposition last season, so this will be another measuring stick of our progress. I did some scouting. They actually outplayed Barcelona at the Dragao this season, with the caveat that Barca had some big injuries. But still. They lost, narrowly, and with a controversial non-penalty decision despite having most of the chances. In their other home games they killed Antwerp and Shakhtar pretty easily. They like to line up ostensibly in a 4-4-2 at home. They have a traditional 9 in Taremi up… Read more »

Santi’s Phonebox

Who do you leave out if you start Jorginho, Martinelli, Trossard or Havertz? I would start those three and keep the juggernaut rolling along.

Nairobi

We have a pretty lethal striker called #AnyoneCanScoreForArsenal !! A pretty rock solid defense and an incredible, incredible team that is just finding its collective rhythm. To me, it looks like a team peaking at the right time of the season. #COYG

Der32

We were playing 11 v 12 vs Barcelona, and now we know why with the Negreira scandal. That RVP red card at Camp Nou was absolutely dumbfounding. I remember Ozil missing a penalty vs Bayern that really knocked our confidence. Tomorrow we go at it again with a clean sheet. New manager, new players, renewed confidence. Come on lads.

Fezec

Real and City are the only teams Arsenal need to have any apprehension over.

I would say it’d be great if those two could get drawn together in the quarter final but UEFA wouldn’t let that happen. The corrupt cunts 🙂

sakaflockaflame

Having two false 9s in Havertz and Trossard upfront are straight up terrorizing defenders. Some of the best wingers in the world either side. Can’t name a better CB pairing than Saliba and Gabi right now. Rice’s delivery and presence ahead of them. Odegaard organizing and playmaking. Kiwior keeping it tight at LB. Partey and Tomiyasu to come back. ESR in the squad. Set piece dominance. An underrated keeper that commands their box and has an arm like a quarterback. We’re inevitable.

Timber LANS next season.

wrightstuff8

YES!!! Love this.
Arm like a quarter back haha great stuff COYG!!!!!!!

PTAFC

Never mind the Champions league we are absolutely shite in Europe full stop. 2 trophies is a meagre return for a club our size same as West Ham and less than Sp*rs! Even Wenger couldn’t win one.

Moronic Inferno

Are you familiar with the concept of the power of positive thinking?…..probably not, might be worth your while looking into it.

The Beast

It’s almost as if it’s really hard to win a competition made up of all the best teams in Europe.

Dr. Gooner

It’s an interesting one. Before this modern era of state sponsored club ownership there was a lot more parity in Europe than there is now. Many of the very best players in the world were in Italian football, and Juve, Milan and Inter were regulars in the finals of the Champions League, but you also had top sides in Spain (the usual suspects abut also Valencia!) and England (United had their golden generation, Newcastle, Leeds), Bayern were still Bayern, and the occasional Dutch or Portuguese upstart punching above their weight too. Arsenal were really good but not clearly better than… Read more »

Y3mmxiii

Absolutely irrelevant.

Dr. Gooner

I saw Donyell Malen tearing it up for Borussia Dortmund in the CL last night. He looks like their most potent offensive threat, had 5 shots and one incredible acute angle goal similar to Bukayo’s from last weekend. His coach has compared him favorably to Alexis Sanchez. And we sold him to PSV for next to nothing in 2017!! He was a hot property coming from Ajax’s academy and he chose to come to us back in 2015 despite big offers from elsewhere because he idolized Bergkamp. He is now 25 and would be a fantastic player for us. Travesty.… Read more »

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