Extra: Wenger on Zagreb, Fifa and Cech

Read extra quotes from Arsène Wenger's press conference ahead of the Chelsea game. For more headlines, visit our Digest page.

on the Champions League game…Overall the numbers were quite good for us as long as we were 11 against 11. Even 10 against 11 we had some chances but it was more difficult. I stand up for my selection and take responsibility for it, but I believe you can repair what happened. We are on a good run in the Premier League and it’s important now to look at that.

on whether it impacts the weekend game…It’s easier to lose away from home than at home. Every defeat hurts but every defeat is also an opportunity to respond in a very strong way. Usually the different competitions do not link together too much on that front.

on only three teams qualifying for the Champions League instead of four…It is a possibility that we will have to repair in the coming months. It’s not only the Champions League teams who are involved in that, it’s Europa League teams as well. We have suffered from the Europa League teams not having taken the competition seriously recently as well.


on whether resting players in Croatia has handed Chelsea the initiative…No, in football you have to forget always cheap excuses and focus on what matters on the day, which is the performance on the day. If you want to make a career at a club without any disappointment, or individual disappointment, it is not possible. Your career is decided by how well you perform on the day that you have to perform. That is what matters on Saturday.

on returning late from Croatia…I don’t use that as an excuse. I knew before the game in Zagreb that time would be short and I took decisions a little bit linked with that. We are in a position where we can perform tomorrow.

on the situation at FIFA…I am first surprised and I can’t believe that. At the moment nothing is proven. I think [they are] accusations from one individual human being, you let the justice work. I can’t believe that the general secretary of FIFA sold tickets for his own profit - I don’t believe that, and I hope my belief is right.

on the pressure on Chelsea...These are very difficult situations to assess. There are always periods were things don’t go as well. We are used to dealing with that. It is less enjoyable when it doesn’t go well of course but I think everybody who has stayed a long time in the game knows that.

on media attention towards him and Mourinho...Realistically people come to watch football and all the rest is a little bit secondary. What is important is the quality of what we will see tomorrow at 12:45 and you want people to focus on that.

on Petr Cech going back to his old club...It is always difficult to go back to your club and play but I believe that he has fortunately handled that this season, [and] that is why I decided to play him as well in the Community Shield. It is the first step that is important and he has dealt very well with it.

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