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Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger says 'Bayern win could be springboard'

Updated 15 Feb 2013 11:17:21

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger says 'Bayern win could be springboard'

Arsenal could have the confidence to go on and win the Champions League if they can knock out German giants Bayern Munich in the last 16, according to manager Arsene Wenger.

The Gunners host Bayern, who were runners-up to Chelsea last season and are currently 15 points clear at the top of the Bundesliga, in the first leg at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday. Wenger feels should his men come through such a challenge, then just like Chelsea, confidence would grow of a first European Cup triumph.

"We have a big game on Tuesday against Bayern. If we get past them, then why should we not go further and win it?" Wenger said.

"It looks at the start that (winning) the FA Cup is more reachable than any other competition, but you don't really know how difficult it will be.

"If you compare it to the Premier League certainly, we have more chances to do it because we are too far away in the Premier League."

Despite the obvious draw of next week's prestigious European fixture, Wenger maintains his side will be fully focused to see off the challenge of Blackburn in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Saturday and secure safe passage into the quarter-finals of the world's oldest knockout competition.

"The FA Cup is an important target for us. We always take it very seriously, we're on a good run and we want to continue the run," said Wenger, whose side have closed back up on the Barclays Premier League top four after back-to-back victories.

"We are the favourites, they're the outsiders, and have nothing to lose. However, if you look at who is in the squad, many of their players have Premier League experience, that is why they are dangerous."

Arsenal have fitness concerns over England midfielder Jack Wilshere, who went off at Sunderland last week as a precaution over a thigh problem.

Captain Thomas Vermaelen should be back from his ankle problem, but fellow defender Laurent Koscielny (calf) will be assessed, while Ivory Coast forward Gervinho could be back in contention following the African Nations Cup.


PA

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