By Richard Clarke in Kiev
Arsène Wenger starts Champions League Group G this evening targeting fast-track qualification to the Knockout Stages.
Arsenal achieved that feat on Matchday Four last season after winning their opening three games in fine style. It allowed Wenger to shuffle his side for the final two ties and arguably helped to sustain their bid for the Premier League title back home.
"The plan is to qualify first and as quickly as possible,” said Wenger at his pre-match press conference in Kiev. "Last year’s group is a good example to take and from that we already know that we can win away from home.”
But, speaking earlier in the week, the Frenchman did highlight a hidden danger in Group G. While Porto, Fenerbache, Kyiv and Arsenal will all balance trophy bids at home and in Europe, Wenger believes the strength of the Premier League could count against his side.
He said: “The difficulty of this group is that you have three teams who are used to playing in the Champions League and normally dominate their own League They can focus completely on the Champions League at times and that promises tough games for us.”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 17 Sep 2008