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Guardiola cautious of desperate Arsenal

Guardiola cautious of desperate Arsenal

LONDON (Reuters) – Bayern Munich will be wary of a wounded Arsenal side when they face the Gunners at the Emirates Stadium in Champions League Group F on Tuesday, according to Bayern coach Pep Guardiola.

Arsenal have been beaten in their opening two fixtures in the group while Bayern have banged in eight goals in two sweeping victories against Olympiakos and Dinamo Zagreb.

“Tomorrow we don’t play six points against zero. We play at 7.45, at 0-0 with 90 minutes to go,” he told a news conference.

“When I analyse a team I never look at the table, I don’t care about that. I have to analyse them as if they had six points. We know each other, (Arsene) Wenger and me.

“I faced his side with Barca and Bayern. They have great technical qualities and are very difficult to play against.”

Arsenal’s hopes of reaching the knockout rounds could vanish if they fail to pick up many points in the home and away double-header with Bayern.

But that makes them dangerous, according to Guardiola.

“In this situation they have an advantage because they have to win,” Guardiola said. “I cannot imagine they won’t fight for 90 minutes. You have to look for a way to play that situation, we have to be intelligent and control our game.

“I prefer our situation, though, no doubt about that; I prefer to come here with six points rather than none.

“But I can imagine my team with zero points at home to Arsenal — I know my team would be animals and aggressive, because it is the last chance. You have to give everything.”

Bayern have won on their previous two visits to Arsenal, the most recent of which was in the last 16 in 2013-14, and will have to shackle free-scoring Pole Robert Lewandowski.

He has scored 22 goals for club and country already this season, including a hat-trick away to Olympiakos.

“We are looking forward to this double-header. Arsenal remain very strong opponents. They haven’t got a point in the Champions League yet and they urgently need to start getting some. Also against us,” he said.

“They won’t be easy opposition to beat. Sometimes it’s easier to face a team that enjoys a passing game, doesn’t just park the bus and defend all the time.”

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Rex Gowar)

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