By Chris Harris

This year's last-16 line-up shows how difficult it is to be consistent in the Champions League, according to Arsène Wenger.

Arsenal have reached the knockout stage for the 13th consecutive season - a record bettered only by Real Madrid - and they will face Bayern Munich next after being paired with the Bundesliga leaders at Friday's draw.

Arsenal and Bayern are two of just five clubs who have survived the past two group stages and Wenger believes that is a telling statistic.

"There is a turnover that looks very quick," he said.

"I heard this morning, the general secretary of UEFA saying that in the last 16 you have only five teams from last year that were in the last 16. That means 11 newcomers in the last 16, that shows you how quickly it changes and how difficult it is to be in there.

"The German clubs for example have made a big, big leap forward. The Spanish clubs are traditionally there and in England we have a little deficit because usually at that level we have four. We are only two this season.

"You have the French, Paris Saint-Germain, coming in, traditionally Porto are always in there. But especially I believe the Germans have improved."

Malaga are one of the 11 'newcomers' despite enduring a difficult year off the pitch.

"They are a big surprise because we bought Cazorla from Malaga," said Wenger.

"They looked [like] a club that was sinking a little bit because they had financial trouble. To find them there today, and what they’ve done in the league, I must say congratulations to what they’ve done. They were a club in complete disarray in July."

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
20 Dec 2012