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Arsenal up against red-hot Barcelona

AFP
Published : Mar 16, 2016, 2:43 am IST
Updated : Mar 16, 2016, 2:43 am IST

Barcelona defender Dani Alves plays with children who gate-crashed the team’s training session in Sant Joan Despi on Tuesday, ahead of their Champions League last 16 second leg match against Arsenal. (Photo: AFP)

Barcelona defender Dani Alves plays with children who gate-crashed the team’s training session in Sant Joan Despi on Tuesday, ahead of their Champions League last 16 second leg match against Arsenal. (Photo: AFP)

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger admitted his side face an almost impossible task when they travel to face a red-hot Barcelona on Wednesday looking to overturn a 2-0 first-leg deficit to reach the Champions League quarter-finals for the first time in six years.

As so often in the second half of Wenger’s 20-year reign, Arsenal will travel to the Camp Nou with a sense of what might have been.

They had their chances to lead at the Emirates three weeks ago before Barca’s brilliant forward triumvirate of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez cut through them with an unerring ease they have made routine.

Messi, Neymar and Suarez have scored a combined 103 goals this season, Arsenal’s entire squad a mere 71.

Top of the list of Wenger’s detractors has been his inability or unwillingness to splash out on the top-class striker needed to turn Arsenal from perennial pretenders into winners.

Yet, he tried to land Suarez whilst the striker was still at Liverpool in 2013. Arsenal could have had Suarez on their side. Instead, when they line-up on Wednesday, they will likely be made to suffer and wonder what could’ve have been once more.

Location: Spain, Katalonia, Barcelona