By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger believes Manchester United will never get a better chance to beat Barcelona than next weekend’s Champions League Final.

The Catalan giants ran out 2-0 winners when the same sides contested the 2009 showpiece in Rome and Barcelona have only got better since then. Pep Guardiola's side have dominated La Liga this season and brushed aside all-comers in Europe - including Arsenal in the last 16.

However Wenger believes that a long, arduous season might be catching up with Barcelona and he thinks Sir Alex Ferguson’s squad has it in them to bring the Champions League trophy back to England.

"I believe against Barcelona, from what I have seen in the last three weeks, there is never a better moment to win it against them," said Wenger.

"They look quite exhausted and Manchester United look sharp physically. In the last three or four games [Barcelona have looked tired], for me, and it takes three weeks to recover physically.

"I am not sure whether Barcelona have enough time to recover. They look on their knees so I give Manchester United a good chance.

"You know Barcelona will have the ball for 70 per cent of the time and Manchester United will have to be very efficient for the 30 per cent of the time they have the ball. No matter what kind of tactics they decide.

"I have an instinctive feeling that Manchester United will change completely their style against them, this time. I think they will go for a rougher midfield, a more direct display than they did in Rome [in 2009]."

Ferguson has fielded a front two in recent games with Wayne Rooney playing just off Javier Hernandez. So will the Man United manager have to sacrifice the in-form Mexican if he floods his midfield to deny space to Xavi, Andres Iniesta and company?

"It could mean playing Hernandez but playing him as a runner, to go direct," replied Wenger. "I don't know what they will decide, that is the uncertainty they have but you know how Barcelona will play. We don't know yet how Manchester will play."

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 May 2011