Monaco v Arsenal Champions League match preview

The Gunners must score at least three goals to progress following a miserable 3-1 defeat in the first leg

imagenotavailable1

Champions League Last 16 second leg: Monaco v Arsenal, 7:30pm ITV (kick-off 7:45pm)

Advertisement

Arsene Wenger returns to his old haunts at Monaco knowing that Arsenal need at least three goals to banish a nightmare showing in the Champions League first leg.

Wenger’s current side were on the wrong end of a 3-1 defeat at the Emirates against the club he managed from 1987-1994.

Miserly Monaco, however, only conceded one goal in the entire Champions League group stage, and not a single one at home, making a second leg turnaround for the Gunners a momentous ask. 

Wenger himself admitted he would have to make “the stats lie” if he was to stand any chance of progressing.

“The statistics are against us. The result in the first leg is against us. We are conscious of that,” he said. “No matter how big the percentage is we have to give absolutely everything to make the stats lie. That’s our desire and belief that we can do it.”

English stars Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jack Wilshere are out injured, but French striker Olivier Giroud returns to make up for his poor showing in the first leg.

The Arsenal striker has scored in each of the three league games since the last Champions League match, and claims he has found form at just the right time.

Advertisement

But the ghost of Monaco still has the power to spook Wenger: in the seven matches he has managed against his former club, he has not recorded a single win.