Arsenal v Barcelona

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TEAM NEWS
Arsenal midfielders Mesut Ozil and Aaron Ramsey and keeper Petr Cech will return for Tuesday's Champions League last-16 tie against holders Barcelona.

They were rested for last weekend's FA Cup fifth-round draw with Hull.

Barca will recall defender Gerard Pique, who was rested for the win at Las Palmas, and midfielder Sergio Busquets, who was suspended.

"We absolutely need to have, as a squad, total focus to have a chance," said Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger.

The Gunners were eliminated by French club Monaco at the first knockout stage last season. They lost 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium before going out on away goals after a 2-0 win in the second leg.

"It is a good opportunity to show we have learned because it is true we had given ourselves a difficult task after the first home leg," he said.

"We need to find the right balance between being audacious because that is what you will need to be against Barcelona."

Wenger added that the Spanish league leaders are "super favourites" to win the contest.

"The difficulty of the task is completely different but it is more difficult to prepare against Hull than Barcelona," he said.

"Against Barcelona everyone is naturally focused. It is more to create belief and confidence."

Provisional Arsenal squad: Cech, Ospina, Monreal, Gibbs, Koscielny, Gabriel, Mertesacker, Bellerin, Chambers, Ramsey, Elneny, Coquelin, Flamini, Ozil, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Reine-Adelaide, Iwobi, Sanchez, Campbell, Walcott, Welbeck, Giroud.

*BBC Sport
 
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We've beaten the best European team in history by beating Barca the last time in 2011, and with a budget squad. Same result here... 2-1 to Arsenal.
 
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Everyone needs to get behind the English teams in the Champions League, the League is fast becoming known as a pushover in Europe.
 

SALTIRE

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Everyone needs to get behind the English teams in the Champions League, the League is fast becoming known as a pushover in Europe.
So if Chelsea is the only one that gets to the QFs, you'd be cheering them on?
 
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So if Chelsea is the only one that gets to the QFs, you'd be cheering them on?
You're damn fuckin' right I would. Quote me on that too! I would even cheer for Liverpool if they were in the Champions League.
 

Bilo

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Well the coefficient counts in EL as well, looking forward to your support mate, cheers.
 

JimJams

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Yes. They tried to organise one with Liverpool but decided they'd rather their players at least broke a sweat.
 

SALTIRE

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Yes. They tried to organise one with Liverpool but decided they'd rather their players at least broke a sweat.
With Sturridge and Coutinho back Barca wouldn't stand a chance. :hypo:
 

JimJams

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Maybe, but they'd just offer Coutinho a contract at half time for Barca B and he wouldn't come out 2nd half.
 

Stevencc

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Can you imagine how many erections Saltire would get during a Liverpool vs Barca game!?
 

SALTIRE

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And the icing on the cake - Hudson is commentating.
Oh man you got me fizzing at the thought of that now!!! Maybe once Liverpool win the EL here and qualify for the CL they could draw Barca, what you think? :lol:
 
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Oh man you got me fizzing at the thought of that now!!! Maybe once Liverpool win the EL here and qualify for the CL they could draw Barca, what you think? :lol:
200.gif
 

Bob Nung

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We've beaten the best European team in history by beating Barca the last time in 2011, and with a budget squad. Same result here... 2-1 to Arsenal.
But if so, Arsenal will still be out if Barce gets 1-0 at the second round
 

smat

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But if so, Arsenal will still be out if Barce gets 1-0 at the second round
Which won't happen. We'll concede at least five goals in the away leg. This first leg is a bit of fun. Which we'll lose 3-0 or something.
 

Bob Nung

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Barce is tired. You will have a good chance to win tomorrow.
 

Bob Nung

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Which won't happen. We'll concede at least five goals in the away leg. This first leg is a bit of fun. Which we'll lose 3-0 or something.
Barce is tired. You will have a good chance to win tomorrow.
 

smat

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Thank you Bob. Fingers crossed mate.
 

4froale

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Really cant see anybody stopping Barcelona at the minute. I'd say this team at least rivals that one of 2011.
 

4froale

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They're close, but no.
I guess its a matter of opinion. You could say that they had Xavi back then which would be true. You could also say Busquets was nowhere near as good as he is now. Think the current front three are better, as well as the goalkeepers. But as I say, matter of opinions.
 

Bob Nung

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I guess its a matter of opinion. You could say that they had Xavi back then which would be true. You could also say Busquets was nowhere near as good as he is now. Think the current front three are better, as well as the goalkeepers. But as I say, matter of opinions.
But for Barce 2011, Puyol, Xavi, Iniesta, Alves all were at their best state, seems Messi better at that time too. I think Barce 2011 has 60% to win against this Barce...
 

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