Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has highlighted the strengths of Slavia Prague ahead of their clash this evening.
The Gunners will be hoping to earn a decent advantage tonight when they welcome the Czech First League champions to the Emirates, but the manager is aware that it will be no easy feat.
Their opponents have already eliminated two British sides from the competition in Rangers FC and Leicester City, winning both legs that were played inside the United Kingdom.
We will need to be aware of their strong showing away from home when they arrive this evening, and Arteta certainly sounds like he will not be taking anything for granted.
“They are a really strong side,” Arteta said on Slavia Prague (via Arsenal.com). “They’ve been unbeaten in the league. You see how they have the ball. I think in the last few years, competing at the highest level, they’ve always been in the game and made it really difficult.
“[They’re] really competitive, brave, very direct and incisive and a team that can cause you problems throughout the game. They never give up, they have a top attitude all the time and that’s why they beat teams because they’re a really good side.”
Arsenal have had a habit of beating themselves recently when giving away silly goals, or simply not showing up to play like they did at the weekend, and I can’t help but believe today’s result will also depend on whether we are performing.
At our best, Slavia will struggle to deal with our talents, but unfortunately it is difficult to be confident on the right mentality being shown on the night.
We definitely cannot afford to play anything like we did at the weekend, but we have saved many of our best performances for Thursday nights.