Wojciech Szczesny has hailed Robert Lewandowski as one of the best strikers in Europe - and says their friendship will be forgotten on Tuesday night.
The Arsenal goalkeeper is looking forward to facing the 25-year-old when Borussia Dortmund visit Emirates Stadium in Champions League Group F.
While Szczesny is wary of the threat Lewandowski and fellow Poland international Jakub Blaszczykowski will pose, he is confident the Gunners can secure another victory.
He is a goalscorer and that's what makes him a good striker. He did it when he was in Poland and since he signed for Dortmund he has always been around the top goalscorers. That's what he doesWojciech Szczesny
“They are quality players, obviously I've known them for a very long time so I know what they are capable of,” he said.
“Certainly Lewandowski is one of the best you can find in Europe so he will be dangerous, but we played against them before [in 2011] and we've handled him quite well so I hope we can do that again.
“Me and Robert [Lewandowski] are very good friends, we speak on a daily basis and he's excited to come here, I'm excited to play against him and it will be a good challenge. We will forget the friendship for now and I'm sure it will be fine after the game.
“It makes it more exciting but other than that I'll treat it like every other game and be professional and prepare in the same way. Hopefully we will get the same result that we've been getting recently.”
Lewandowski’s international goalscoring record has been questioned by some, but Szczesny has no doubts about his friend’s qualities.
“He's had a tough time with the national team but when you look at his record in the Champions League and Bundesliga last year you can see how good he is,” he said.
“He is a goalscorer and that's what makes him a good striker. He did it when he was in Poland and since he signed for Dortmund he has always been around the top goalscorers. That's what he does, it's as simple as that.”Copyright 2013 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 21 Oct 2013