Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says the best form of defence is attack in Wednesday night's crucial Champions league quarter-final second leg against Villarreal at the Emirates Stadium. The Gunners are in pole position to progress to the last four following a 1-1 draw at El Madrigal last week. However, the North London outfit are significantly hampered at the back with injuries to goalkeeper Manuel Almunia and defenders William Gallas, Gael Clichy and Johan Djourou. And Wenger insists that rather than sitting back and protecting their precious away goal in Spain, his charges should play to their strengths and push forward to kill off the opposition. “It is very dangerous if you start the game not wanting to play, if you do have to play, it is difficult to switch,” he said. “It is a subconscious thing that you could play a little reservedly. After 80 minutes if it is 0-0, you can say what you want to the players, they will stay back.” Arsenal suffered at the same stage five years ago having drawn the first leg away at Chelsea 1-1, before going down 2-1 at Highbury courtesy of a late Wayne Bridge goal - the last time the Gunners lost at home in Europe. But Wenger's side are currently enjoying an 18 match unbeaten run in the league, and have only lost two games out of their last 26 in all competitions. “You could not predict that," he said. “We have suffered a lot but their mental strength was a positive surprise. "You don’t know how they will respond with difficulties and we have a chance to show that we can deal with a big game. I believe that we will win. I want them to be rewarded.” ARSENAL FANS! Check FourFourTwo.com’s ever-expanding interviews archive for more stuff to read: Web Exclusives Patrick Vieira, Cesc Fabregas Q&A Theo Walcott, Cesc Fabregas One on One Arsene Wenger, Thierry Henry, Ian Wright Boy's A Bit Special Theo Walcott, Armand Traore Perfect XI Ian Wright What Happened Next? Gus Caesar, Peter Marinello And Another Thing Being a Big Four fan Plus! Rate Arsenal players (and others) on Talentspotter
15 April 2009
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