Arsenal v Barcelona

22 Feb

Arsenal training

Arsenal players take part in training at London Colney before Tuesday’s match against Barcelona

Champions League last 16

Emirates Stadium
Tuesday, 23 February
19:45 GMT
Live text on the BBC Sport website, live commentary BBC Radio 5 live


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.


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