By Lloyd Webb

Arsène Wenger says Arsenal won’t expect any weaknesses from Sunderland ahead of their FA Cup tie.

The Gunners begin the defence of their crown against the Black Cats on Saturday at Emirates Stadium having already beaten the Wearside club 3-1 in December.

Wenger believes every team takes the tournament seriously and says there is no such thing as a weakened starting XI under Sam Allardyce.

We have learnt this season that the Premier League is tricky

Arsène Wenger

“I’ve been in the job long enough to not expect any weaknesses from Sam Allardyce because I know him well enough to know that his team will be focused and motivated no matter who plays,” he said.

"In the Premier League you cannot say that the managers play weaker teams because everybody has a squad of 25 players who are of Premier League level.

“The FA Cup is a great competition. We take care of this competition like everybody does. Everybody dreams of winning the FA Cup. There may be some priorities at some stage of the season for some clubs who think they are in trouble and have to make these kinds of decisions, so they choose.

“We are confident because when we perform we know we can beat anyone in the Premier League. We have learnt this season that the Premier League is tricky and we play at home in front of our crowd where we feel that we can qualify, but we have learnt against Sunderland that on the break they were dangerous. It was a very hard-fought win against them.”

Hector Bellerin
Hector Bellerin

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8 Jan 2016