Arsenal are one of the best teams in Europe, says Bayern’s Van Buyten
Bayern Munich defender Daniel van Buyten warns his team-mates that Arsenal are "one of the best teams in Europe"
Daniel Van Buyten claims that Arsenal are “one of the best teams in Europe” ahead of the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie at The Emirates on Tuesday.
Arsenal’s preparation for their clash against the Bundesliga leaders has been far from ideal after losing 1-0 to Blackburn Rovers in the FA Cup fifth round on Saturday.
Arsene Wenger’s side are also struggling in the race for fourth place, but Van Buyten, who is Thomas Vermaelen’s Belgium team-mate, still rates the Gunners highly.
“I can feel the excitement already, but I think that’s the case for every player,” Van Buyten told Bayern’s website.
“Champions League football is just so special, especially when you play an English club. We’re all really looking forward to it.
“Arsenal are one of the best teams in Europe. They have huge attacking potential, excellent individuals and they’re a very good team unit. But we have plenty of quality, and we intend to show it. It’ll be a great game.
“Arsenal are obviously quality. But even against teams lacking Arsenal’s big name players, it’s always difficult for the defence and the whole team, in Wolfsburg for example, or in Mainz.
“It might look easy, but a huge amount of work goes into it, lots of training, lots of communication. All the players put a huge amount into it, even when we don’t have the ball.”
Arsenal v Bayern Munich: Pre-match facts
• Lukas Podolski played for Bayern between 2006 and 2009, scoring 15 goals in 71 league appearances. Either side of that spell he spent a total of six years with Cologne and in ten games against Bayern, was only once on the winning side.
• Arsenal are seeking a quarter-final place for the first time since 2010 but lost at home to Bundesliga opponents in the group stage. Schalke’s 2-0 victory ended the Gunners’ run of six successive home wins against German visitors.
• The Gunners are the third English opponents for Bayern in the last two campaigns. They met Manchester City in last season’s group stage, winning 2-0 in Munich before losing by the same scoreline away with qualification already assured, and then took on Chelsea in the final at their own Fußball Arena München.
• Bayern have lost on their last four visits to England and have never won in London in five trips. Their overall record against English teams is W13 D13 L10; away from home it is W2 D7 L6.