Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: Duo Adamant They Can Win

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: Duo Adamant They Can Win

Article excerpt

Byline: Ken Gaunt

ARSENE Wenger maintains Arsenal have every confidence they can overcome Liverpool in the quarter-finals of the Champions League.

The pair were already scheduled to face off at Emirates Stadium in the Premier League on Saturday, April 5, and so will now play three times in a week, with Anfield hosting the second leg of the European tie.

And the manner of Arsenal's victory over holders AC Milan in the last round has left Wenger confident of making more progress towards the final in Moscow.

Wenger said: "We showed against Milan that when we are at our best we can beat anyone. We just knocked Milan out, who were the holders. Liverpool have a fantastic stadium, very loud on cup occasions that can raise the atmosphere and certainly raise the level of their game. We will know each other well after the three games. It's challenging and interesting."

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez was philosophical about the draw but insisted he is not looking ahead to a third semifinal against Chelsea in four years - which will happen if both win their quarter-finals - just yet.

"It was a possibility and now we will see how we can afford these three games," he said. "The first thing is to think about Arsenal and I think it's important to go one step at a time. Nobody wanted to play an English team - in this case, we could play two English teams. But we have confidence, we are playing well, we are scoring goals."

Manchester United will play Serie A side Roma for the fifth and sixth times in less than a year - and cannot face another English side before the final. But assistant boss Carlos Queiroz has warned his players Luciano Spalleti's side are a much better team than the one thrashed 7-1 at Old Trafford last season.

He said: "We should know them very well. But what is our strength is also our weakness. Roma know us very well after they played against us so many times, especially after the way we beat them last season. …

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