'I want to see we’re up for the fight'

There is no doubt it has been a difficult period for everyone associated with the club, but Per Mertesacker is demanding a big reaction on Tuesday night.

We go into our Champions League last 16 second leg against Bayern Munich with a mountain to climb but, no matter how big the challenge, our skipper wants to see one quality above all others.

“I think we saw on a lot of occasions that we were absolutely not ready for a fight, and that’s what I want to see tomorrow: that we are up for a fight, to challenge something,” Mertesacker said.

“We need to turn it around. That is really the focus, to come back to our strength.

“I think it’s up to us to show a different face . That is really something we are going to demand because we literally blew it away in the second half [at Allianz Arena]. So it’s really down to us now to make the first step to make our fans proud of ourselves again. That is really something that we need the emphasis on.

“I expect a lot from our players performance-wise, that is what we demand. We wanted to be in the Champions League, we are still in there so let’s go for it.

“We played hard last season to get there and now this is our chance to get everyone back [onside]. But it is down to focusing on the next opposition.”

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