Red Bull Arena

Next Game

New York Red Bulls v Arsenal

Saturday, 26 July 2014, 22:00

Friendly Match

Last Game

Boreham Wd 0 - 2 Arsenal

Saturday, 19 July 2014, 15:00

Friendly Match

Pep relishing Arsenal test

Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola is bidding to end an unwanted personal record at the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday night when the European champions tackle Arsenal.

Last Updated: 19/02/14 at 12:51 Post Comment

Pep Guardiola: Ready for clash with Arsenal

Pep Guardiola: Ready for clash with Arsenal

Free £50 bet

Daily Offers and Promotions, sign up for a free £50 matched bet

A year to the day since a 3-1 win at the same last-16 stage helped secure victory on away goals against Arsenal - winners of the second leg 2-0 - Guardiola's men return to the London aiming to take a significant step towards becoming the first side to retain the trophy in the UEFA Champions League era.

Former Barcelona boss Guardiola said: "It's my third time as a trainer here to play against Arsenal. I've never won here.

"I learnt that you can't dominate 90 minutes against Arsenal. It's impossible.

"You can play good, you can dominate during half-time, 30 minutes, 75 minutes, but complete 90 minutes it's impossible. Always you have a problem.

"We'll try to make a good game, as best as possible; don't think too much about the second game, concentrate on what we have to do tomorrow. And I hope it goes well.

"It's a good test tomorrow to know what is our level in Europe this year."

Bayern are in familiar surroundings in London, having won the 2013 European Cup at Wembley under Guardiola's predecessor, Jupp Heynckes.

They are staying in the same hotel and the referee on Wednesday is also the same as the official who took charge of the all-German final against Borussia Dortmund, Italian Nicola Rizzoli.

After a treble-winning campaign, Guardiola knows expectations are high, but he is not yet considering Bayern becoming the first side since the great AC Milan side of 1990 to retain the trophy.

He added: "My target is play every week better than the week before.

"I know when we don't win everything it will be a little bit disappointing, but I know how difficult it is to win.

"The title is so difficult. It's not happened since the 90s. I'm not worried about that. I'm not concerned about that.

"We're going to look forward to always getting better."

It is ominous for Arsenal, with Guardiola himself possessing a formidable winning record.

As comparisons abound between the all-conquering Bayern and Barca, Guardiola was not prepared to enter the debate.

The favourites' tag and expectation are familiar for Guardiola.

"I can't compare with my past, my Barcelona," he added. "I have to handle, to accept we are favourites to win."

Guardiola was full or respect for Arsenal, despite their barren eight-year run without a trophy.

The Spaniard added: "Arsenal compete with huge, huge teams and, for me, remain a good team, a good club.

"We're going to fight tomorrow against one of the best teams in Europe."

Arsenal stated their intent this season with the signing of Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid last August.

Guardiola is familiar with the threat posed by the Germany playmaker and hopes Bayern can starve Ozil of possession.

"He's a big talent," Guardiola said. "We have to control him. The best way to control him is when Bayern have the ball. That's what we're going to try to do tomorrow."

Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer is from the same city, attended the same school and has played in the same teams as Gelsenkirchen native Ozil.

He has not spoken to Ozil or the other Germans in Arsenal's team since January, but recognises Arsenal are a stronger opposition than 12 months ago, when Bayern scored twice in the opening 21 minutes.

The goalkeeper said: "It would be great if we could have such a start as last year to repeat what we did then.

"(But) we know it will be quite difficult. They've improved since then."

Bayern's former Chelsea winger Arjen Robben also expects a tough test against a Gunners on course to end their search for silverware.

He said: "They haven't won a title in a few years. For me they're still a very good team.

"They're up there in the Premier League, they're in the Champions League. I think they have a good chance this year of winning something."

Free £50 bet

Daily Offers and Promotions, sign up for a free £50 matched bet

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

e made his power play to try and get Sheikhy to raise his wages or trade him to PSG. PSG were probably not interested and he is stuck with no cake and no vacation. @Jay_D> Surely you jest about FFP being real, right? All Platini is doing is making billionaries pay measly fines, so he and his cronies can get rich. If a fool can pay 50 mil for David Luiz, he will happily pay some fine to UEFA. FFP has failed as for it to succeed UEFA had to take it...

Synergy
Toure: I am staying with City

G

uess we can expect Toure's explanation of his behaviour around the same time Pete Townshend publishes his book then.

ceeps
Toure: I am staying with City

D

amn you Yaya, don't scare me like that! I only ate the icing. I didn't eat the soft and scrumptious middle - I will buy you another cake!

MCFC87
Toure: I am staying with City

Footer 365

World Cup: Argentina fined by FIFA for displaying controversial banner

FIFA have handed the Argentine FA a fine of just under £20,000 after their players displayed a controversial banner.

Luis Suarez's biting ban to be fast-tracked by Court of Arbitration for Sport

The Court of Arbitration for Sport may rule on Luis Suarez's appeal over his biting ban before the start of the season.

Transfer News: Liverpool goalkeeper Jose Reina keen to end career in Spain

Liverpool goalkeeper Jose Reina expects to stay at Anfield but hopes to end his playing career back in his native Spain.

Mail Box

Are Pre-Season Tours Really A Problem?

Are pre-season tours really a problem? Liverpool went to Australia last summer and it didn't prevent them from having a good season. Plus, thoughts on LvG and keepers...

It Isn't Easy Supporting Spurs, You Know

We have a long mail about the travails of supporting Spurs, plus Friday thoughts on Marko Marin, marketing, victory v beauty, travelling and vanishing sprays...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property