Arsene Wenger says last season’s FA Cup win will “stimulate the brains” of his players as they seek to defend the trophy.
The Gunners face Reading in Saturday’s semi-final at Wembley Stadium, with the holders firm favourites to progress.
However, Wenger says his players will not allow any complacency to set in against their Championship opponents.
"Last year we went to penalties against Wigan and we have learnt from that. The urgency level will be high in our team"
“I’m playing my 10th semi-final on Saturday so that means we know how to prepare. We know as well that it is always tricky,” the manager said.
“It’s a special occasion for us to share with our fans and we want to go home happy. Last year we went to penalties against Wigan and we have learnt from that. The urgency level will be high in our team.
“The fact that we won [the cup] last year is a good memory and can stimulate your brain, your desire, and we want to take the positives from it. We also remember that we suffered a lot before we got there so we have to prepare ourselves to battle first.
“Once you are in the semi-final at Wembley it would be absolutely not intelligent to think you can just turn up and win the game.
“We have prepared well since the start of the season for this game and we know exactly what will face us. I think the team will have the needed focus.”
Despite Reading’s struggles in the Championship, Wenger expects them to give his side a big test in the semi-final.
“They have many players who have the experience in the Premier League,” he said. “They have a good offensive potential, with Pogrebnyak, Mackie, Robson-Kanu, McCleary and they are all dangerous players.
“They have a very efficient style, and go a lot for crosses. They are very efficient on crosses. For us they can be a danger going forward.
“[Steve Clarke] has good experience so he knows exactly what to do. He has spent a long time at the top and he knows exactly what will happen. I’m sure he will prepare his team very well.”
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