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Barcelona have the utmost respect for Arsenal – Soler

Barcelona will afford Arsenal “the utmost respect” in the Champions League last 16, club director Albert Soler has insisted.

The reigning European champions were drawn against Arsene Wenger’s side in Monday’s draw in Nyon and enjoy a strong record against the Gunners, having twice beaten them in the knockout phase since they triumphed in the final in 2006.

However, Soler has warned Barca’s successes against Arsenal in recent years will have no bearing on this season’s tie.

“Arsenal and Barca have a very similar system of play. I’m convinced the fans will enjoy the football,” he said after the draw.

“The way we understand football is the same. They will be two great games. 

“As always, we have the utmost respect. I’m sure we’ll have some problems playing against them, so let’s wait and see. 

“There will be 180 minutes of football, we have to play two games and we’ll see where that takes us. We hope to have all our players available to ensure the show is a good one.

“Barca are used to playing under pressure, we’re the reigning champions and that gives you pressure and an advantage. 

“Given that I don’t believe the past affects the future, we’ll go game by game and result by result.”

Mon 14 Dec, 2015
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