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Wenger: Fully focused Gunners

Arsene Wenger wants Arsenal to put full focus into regaining their domestic form as they await the draw for the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League.

Last Updated: 05/12/12 at 08:45 Post Comment

Arsene Wenger: The Arsenal manager saw his team miss out on a top seed for Champ

Arsene Wenger: The Arsenal manager saw his team miss out on a top seed for Champ

With qualification already secure ahead of Tuesday's last Group B tie against Olympiakos, Wenger elected to leave several first-team regulars behind.

But although Tomas Rosicky fired Arsenal ahead after 38 minutes, the Greeks fought back through a controversial effort by Giannis Maniatis and a well-taken strike from substitute Kostas Mitroglou.

Defeat has left Wenger facing more questions about the direction of his team, who have now not won in four games and have also missed out on a top seed for the Champions League last-16 draw.

But Wenger said: "Let's see [what happens in the draw], but for now it is important for us to focus on the [domestic] championship, forget about the Champions League a little bit and get ourselves back in decent form in the championship."

He added: "We need a good Christmas present now (in the draw), but we will see.

"We can get a bad draw or less strong team, but you normally get strong teams through anyway now.

"The disadvantage we have is we play the second game away, but that is not statistically proven to be such a disadvantage."

Arsenal, who were beaten 2-0 by Swansea City at Emirates Stadium last weekend, host fifth-placed West Brom on Saturday.

And Wenger has challenged his team to produce a response, as he said: "It is a good opportunity for us to keep focused, to show strength and unity, that is what you want to do in the next game."

Rosicky had just come back from an injury lay-off and Wenger revealed his second-half substitution was pre-planned.

He said: "He is a bit tight, muscular, but no [new] injury. We will see how we recovers now for Saturday."

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Readers' Comments

M

aybe Southampton's objectives have changed. They were looking to be a Champions League club, I believe. I love this quote so much. So arrogant. So poignant. You can see where it's all gone wrong.

MarkyDee
Rodgers: The pressure's on

T

o make it more fair, we should remove the requirements to score goals and not to concede goals. Then we could just spin and dance and leap and twirl and we'd never have to grow up! We'd be the bestest evar!

dr soccer
Arteta: Defeat 'not fair'

W

inners two weeks in a row? I haven't felt this good since the halcyon days of sir alex and micky phelan.

GVMUFC
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