LONDON (AFP) - Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger admits he would love the chance for a revenge mission against Manchester United or Chelsea in the Champions League quarter-finals.
Wenger's side swept into the last eight with a majestic 5-0 victory over Porto at the Emirates Stadium that sealed a 6-2 aggregate triumph in the second round tie.
Nicklas Bendtner was the Gunners' hero with the first hat-trick of his career, but sublime displays from Samir Nasri, who scored a brilliant solo goal, and Andrey Arshavin put Wenger in unusually fiesty form after Tuesday's match.
Winning in such style without captain Cesc Fabregas, key defender William Gallas and star forward Robin van Persie clearly got Wenger's juices flowing as he claimed Arsenal would fancy their chances against Premier League rivals United or Chelsea.
Arsenal have already lost all four league meetings with United and Chelsea this season, as well losing the Champions League semi-final to Sir Alex Ferguson's team last season and the FA Cup semi-final last year against Chelsea.
But Wenger insisted he would be happy to play either in the next round of Europe's elite club competition.
"I have a funny feeling maybe it's good for us to play an English team," Wenger said.
"We have not done well against Chelsea and against Man U this year and it would be a good chance to show we can do it against them. If we get them we can't do worse than we did in the Premier League.
"What I don't want is a negative obssession with avoiding Chelsea or Man Utd.
"We are happy to be in the last eight. It is never easy to be in the top eight in Europe. The negative side of that is you only have good teams left now."
After being widely written off several times this season, Arsenal showed they are made of sterner stuff than many believed with the kind of magical display that suggests they could yet end their five-year wait for silverware.
They are still in the hunt for the title and will fancy their chances against anyone in Europe on this form, yet Wenger admits there is still plenty of room for improvement.
"At the beginning of the season nobody expected this team to be where they are but it is important to improve more. There are still some weak moments in the game when we need to improve," he said.
"Before we think about Barcelona, Chelsea or Man Utd we need to improve."
While Bendtner deservedly took the plaudits after silencing the critics who had called for him to be dropped following his poor finishing in the weekend win over Burnley, it was Nasri who really caught the eye.
The French midfielder has mostly been used as a winger by Wenger but he deputised for Fabregas superbly in a more central role - proving that there should be life after the Spaniard if he ever leaves the Emirates.
"He is developing well. What Nasri has shown in the game, he has shown in training and I have expected that to come out," said Wenger.
"He has talent and now he starts to be efficient - great players can assist and score goals, he is starting to do that now."
Once again Porto left England licking their wounds after a dismal defensive display, but boss Jesualdo Ferreira conceded his team may have been beaten by the tournament's eventual winners.
"I think they can win it," he said. "They scored the most goals in the first phase of the competition. They have players of great quality and make the most of important moments in a match.
"They have been playing very well in England and have a big chance to win the Premier League as well. That is what you call maturity and class.
"When you are playing in the Champions League it is clear a result like this will make a mark and there is a little bit of pain but we will do everything to get over it."
|52||N. Bendtner||10' 25' 44' 90+1'|
|Coach: A. Wenger|
for T. Rosický 57'
for S. Nasri 73'
for A. Arshavin 77'
|Gala: No extra payment for Grosskreutz|
|Increase Bundesliga´s TV rights or be left behind - Rummenigge|
|Kane: I´m no flash in the pan|
|Perez: United showed inexperience in De Gea saga|
|Milligan: Socceroos wary of Tajikistan|
|Conte wants more players like Pelle|
|OFC World Cup Qualifying Review: Samoa to meet Tahiti in next round|
|Krychowiak stayed at Sevilla because of Emery|
|I never considered Bayern exit - Gotze|
|Balotelli ´not in good condition´, Milan must improve - Mihajlovic|
|Robben slams ´stupid´ Martins Indi|
|Robben laments injury blow|
|Euro 2016 Qualifiers Review: Bale edges Wales closer, Iceland dent Netherlands´ qualification hopes|
|De Bruyne relieved to ´boss´ Bosnia-Herzegovina|
|Blind furious after nightmare debut|
|Coleman sees shades of Charles in Bale winner|
|Conte only concerned about Italy winning|
|Mauritania v South Africa: SAFA to investigate Masilela no-show|
|AFC World Cup Qualifying Review: Qatar hit 15 in Bhutan rout|
|Belgium 3 Bosnia-Herzegovina 1: De Bruyne shines in straightforward victory|
|Cyprus 0 Wales 1: Bale winner takes Wales one step closer|
|Netherlands 0 Iceland 1: Sigurdsson winner caps difficult first game for Blind|
|Italy 1 Malta 0: Pelle spares wasteful Azzurri|
|Balotelli stars in Milan friendly win|
|Bhutan thrashed 15-0 by Qatar in qualifier|
|Rwanda v Ghana: Gyan doubt gives hosts hope|
|Tanzania v Nigeria: Enyeama out of AFCON qualifier|
|Valdes and Berahino included in Premier League squads|
|Costa Rica v Brazil: Dunga´s men return after Copa disappointment|
|Spain v Slovakia: Azpilicueta eyeing important revenge|
|Adebayor left out of Tottenham squad list for league and Europe|
|San Marino v England: Place in history books beckons for Rooney|
|Germany can cope with Reus absence - Low|
|Bayern offer aid to refugees in ´training camp´|
|BREAKING NEWS: Welbeck ruled out for months after knee surgery|
|South Korea 8 Laos 0: Son leads the way in rout|
|Australia 5 Bangladesh 0: Socceroos surge to emphatic win|
|Japan 3 Cambodia 0: Hosts pick up first qualifying win|
|Rudiger aiming to nail down Euros spot after Roma move|
|Melo happy to join Inter at last|
|Hernandez thanks Ferguson after United departure|
|Chung: AFC has compromised FIFA election|
|Wales the new best of British|
|Reus out of Germany qualifiers|
|Chile v Paraguay: Vidal missing for Copa champions|
|Ghedin: Anything is possible for Malta|
|Pogba will be worth €100m - Marotta|
|England can win Euro 2016 - Hodgson tells players|
|Conte unsure over Balotelli future|
|Portugal - France Preview: Deschamps aiming to correct mistakes|
|Martial never the same again - Mangala|
|Copa del Rey Review: Racing fall at the first|
|Shelvey dismisses talk of England snub|
|Galatasaray unable to play Grosskreutz|
|Faroe Islands v Northern Ireland: O´Neill preaches patience ahead of Euro double-header|
|Levy slams ´wholly inappropriate´ West Brom after Berahino chase|
|Panama v Uruguay: Visitors without Suarez and Cavani|
|Captaincy won´t change me - Robben|
|Liverpool sign Brazilian youngster Allan|
|PFA expects swift Berahino resolution|
|Argentina v Bolivia: Mascherano backs ´very special´ Messi|
|´I do not know if I´m worth €80million´ - Martial shocked at price-tag|
|Afellay suspension reduced|
|Noble red card rescinded|
|Portugal v France: Deschamps aiming to correct mistakes|
|Bahebeck given the all clear|
|Germany v Poland: Muller out to settle the score|
|Gibraltar v Republic of Ireland: Keane counting on McCarthy and Walters|
|Georgia v Scotland: Tbilisi trip has must-win feel for Robertson|
|Juve still the team to beat - Hernanes|
|De Gea will remain professional, says team-mate Mata|
|Berahino given extra time off following strike tweet|
|´No excuses´ as Costa seeks to kick-start season|
|I´m not like Messi or Ronaldo – Hazard|
|United States v Peru: Klinsmann out to ´prove a point´|
|Martinez unsure when Cleverley will return|
|France set for Russia friendly ahead of Euros|
|Former Manchester United forward Berbatov joins PAOK|
|De Gea must play to earn Euro 2016 spot – Del Bosque|
|Cahill thrilled to lead Socceroos|
|Wijnaldum urges patience with new-look Newcastle|
|Reid praises Stones´ professionalism|
|Mexico v Trinidad and Tobago: Islanders hoping to build on Gold Cup display|
|Choosing Brazil over Spain was easiest decision, says Rafinha|
|Galliani hails ´changed´ Balotelli|
|OFC World Cup Qualifying Review: American Samoa notch second competitive win|
|Canada v Belize: Hosts look to stay calm|
|Carragher surprised by ´big´ Martial price|
|No pressure on Rodgers - Rush|
|No Benzema, no Cavani - Arsenal ´can´t compete´ says Sol Campbell|
|FFA muzzle Postecoglou after pay dispute criticism|
|Celtic complete Simunovic signing|
|Joaquin: I´m as happy as a little boy|
|Navas given time off by Costa Rica|
|Martial unfazed by prospect of United pressure|
|Ramos urges De Gea to overcome transfer woe|