Arsenal 1 Bayern Munich 3: There’s work to be done, admits Wenger
Arsenal 1 Bayern Munich 3: Arsene Wenger admits that there is "work to be done" after Gunners are well-beaten by Bundesliga side
Arsene Wenger conceded that there is “work to be done” at Arsenal after the Gunners’ Champions League hopes were all but ended by Bayern Munich.
The Bundesliga leaders made the perfect start to the last-16 first leg when Toni Kroos fired past Wojciech Szczesny in the seventh minute, before Thomas Mueller’s close-range finish doubled the visitors’ advantage.
Arsenal were rewarded for a much-improved start to the second half as Lukas Podolski capitalised on confusion in the Bayern area to halve the deficit with 35 minutes remaining.
But the Bavarian side restored their two-goal advantage after Mario Manduzkic bundled his effort past Bacary Sagna and Szczesny to leave the Gunners on the brink of elimination.
“The quality of my players is there, but they’re not getting their rewards,” said Wenger after the game.
“We’re not being rewarded for our efforts. I still have confidence in my players and in my team. But, on tonight’s evidence, there’s clearly work to be done.
“We were a bit nervous. They’re good going forward on both flanks with their full backs. When they won the ball, every time they created a lot of danger on the flanks. It was very difficult for the defenders. We were outnumbered at times because we had to push forward a lot.
“They’re a quality side and we have to give them credit for that.”
Wenger, whose side trail fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur by four points in the Premier League, conceded that his side will now have to focus on qualifying for next season’s Champions League.
He added: “We’ll have two battles; maybe the easier battle will be to be back in the Champions League.
“But we have to give everything to try and change things in the second leg. It’s happened to us before, to be 2-0 down.
“That’s one of the positive things that happened before. We changed and reversed things [in the past], so we have examples of moments when we’ve come back to 2-2.”