By Giuseppe Muro

Arsène Wenger thinks any team that beats Barcelona will immediately become favourites to win the Champions League.

Pep Guardiola’s side are understandably fancied to conquer Europe this season having remained unbeaten in the Group Stage, won 16 successive La Liga matches and provided the final trio listed for the FIFA Ballon d’Or award.

Arsenal have been drawn against Barca in the last 16 and Wenger says the Gunners will be installed as front-runners if they defy expectations and go through. With that in mind, he says his players go into the tie with nothing to lose.

“Anybody who beats Barcelona and knocks them out is straight away favourites for the competition,” insisted the manager.

“It would be a fantastic boost [to beat them], that tells you how big this game is.

“We are not favourites so it takes a little bit the pressure off our shoulders. On the other hand we are very ambitious and we want to show that we can knock them out.”

Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source
12 Feb 2011