By Joe Brewin
Carl Jenkinson says Arsenal are fully prepared for the physical battle awaiting them at Stoke on Saturday.
Arsène Wenger’s side have not been at their best at the Britannia Stadium in recent seasons, picking up one win in their last four visits.
But Jenkinson believes Arsenal are ready for this weekend’s challenge and insists they are capable of dealing with whatever the hosts throw their way.
“I think it is fair to say that most teams struggle with the physical side that Stoke have,” he told Arsenal Player at an event for The Arsenal Foundation.
“It is something we have to be aware of and it is no surprise anymore, everybody knows how Stoke play. They are a big, strong and physical side but we are prepared for that, know what is coming and just have to deal with it as best as we can.
“We are very excited but we know it will be a tough game. Stoke away is never an easy place to go and we have to be prepared for the sort of game we know they are going to throw at us. But we are looking forward to going up there and getting a win.”
Chelsea booked their place in May’s Champions League final against Bayern Munich on Tuesday, a match which could have implications in the battle to join Europe’s elite next season.
Not even a fourth-place finish would be enough to secure a play-off for the competition if Roberto Di Matteo’s side win in Munich and Jenkinson admits third place is now more crucial than ever.
“Of course they can win it, they wouldn't have got this far if they didn't have it in them to win,” said the right back. “But it is in our hands now, we are in third place and we can't be relying on other things for us to be in the Champions League now.
“We need to make sure of it ourselves and the only way to do that is finish in third place. We just have to do everything we can to win our next three games and make that place ours.”
Carl was speaking at an Arsenal Foundation event in Hackney. Watch the full interview on Arsenal Player now.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 26 Apr 2012