Having won the first leg of their Europa League clash with CSKA by 4-1, Arsenal play the rematch in Moscow tonight. Shkodran Mustafi believes the team need to be careful, having learned from the experience of Barcelona two days earlier.
In the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal against AS Roma, the Catalan giants beat Roma by the same result Arsenal beat CSKA. Nevertheless, with an underwhelming performance in the Italian capital the Blaugrana allowed their opponents to set the overall score level and go through on the away goal they scored. Mustafi stresses that the Gunners must learn from that and not allow themselves a similar mistake.
He believes the misfortune of Barcelona arrived at the perfect moment for Arsenal, for the players to be reminded that this is football and anything is possible, that a home win in the first leg doesn’t mean qualification for the next round should be taken for granted. Therefore, he calls upon all his teammates to stay focused in order to finish the job they’ve started at the Emirates last week.
The centre-back praised the achievement of AS Roma. He says it wasn’t easy for them after losing 4-1 to a team of such quality as Barcelona have, but they did a brilliant job. In the end, Mustafi adds that he has been in professional football long enough to know such things can happen.
Mustafi himself displayed clearly what can happen when players lose focus against Southampton on Sunday when he got caught on his heels and allowed Shane Long to get in front of him and give the Saints the lead. Luckily, the attacking section later made up for it and Arsenal won the game by 3-2.
The importance of this game and getting the job done can hardly be exaggerated at this point, given the Premier League position Arsenal are in.
The Gunners can be backed at 13/10 to win in Moscow.