Arsene Wenger knows that, whatever he says to his Arsenal players, minds will inevitably turn to the Champions league game against Bayern Munich on Tuesday. That is why Wenger would rather be playing an FA cup game today than a Premier league game. The Prof feels that the knockout nature of cup competition is better at focusing the minds of the players, and keeping them on the job at hand.
“It’s less difficult if you play a cup game than if you play a championship game.
“If you play a cup game you know if you win you are through. But if you play a championship game it’s just the usual thing and you could already have your mind on Tuesday night. I don’t think in a cup game it plays a big part in it.
“The players are focused on Blackburn completely. They know as well there is an opportunity there. If we go through we are in the quarter-finals, and they don’t want to miss that.”
Wenger is not bemoaning the fixture list, in fact he remembers it being a lot worse in 2011. He recalls having to play Stoke before the Carling cup final, while Birmingham has their game called off. Walcott and Fabregas had to miss the final due to knocks picked up in that match. We also had to play Barcelona in the Champions league and Manchester United in the FA cup in a very short space of time, and it proved to be disastrous as we lost in all three competitions.
Arsenal must not let a similar thing happen, and need to get a good result today to keep a good run of form going into Tuesday night against Bayern.