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Wenger: Bayern win was turning point

18 May 2013 11:08

Arsene Wenger has pinpointed Arsenal's win over Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League as a turning point in their season.

The Gunners sit fourth in the Premier League prior to their meeting with Newcastle on Sunday, one point ahead of local rivals Tottenham in the chase for Champions League qualification.

Arsenal had trailed Andre Villas-Boas' men by as much as seven points in March, and Wenger has hailed his squad for overturning that deficit.

"It's a big comeback. And you cannot say Tottenham have not done well recently. They won their games. We needed not to lose any more games," he said.

"I had the feeling it could go to the last day. When we were seven points behind, we'd have been happy for it to go to the last game!

"We're in a position nobody expected us to be in, we have our destiny and fate in our own hands, and that's what you fight for in the game.

"This team suffered for a very long time from a lack of confidence because you take the talisman away - Robin van Persie - and get the new players in.

"That was the problem and balancing the team took a while - to find a formula to have a good balance in the team. Since this has been back, we have been very efficient.

"The Bayern Munich away game was very important, you could feel after that we could do it. That helped. I never felt this team lacked focus or desire to do well, but we lacked confidence for a while."

Arsenal made a similarly late dash for a European place last season, but Wenger does not believe that fact will provide a mental advantage.

"I don't know how much psychological advantage we have. What is important is how much effort we put in the game on Sunday, that is all," he added.

"The only advantage we have is that our fate depends on our result. We don't look at Tottenham.

"I believe the experience from last year is that we are on a very strong run. We know how to behave to win the game - that certainty from our long run and bring it into our next game.

"Recently, we have shown we can win these games. Let's just continue to do that."

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Info

Competition
UEFA Champions League
Date
13 March 2013
Kick-off
20:45
Half-time
0 - 1
Full-time
0 - 2
On aggregate
3 - 3
Venue
Allianz-Arena (München)
Attendance
68000

Goals

0 - 1
3' O. Giroud
 (assist by T. Walcott)
0 - 2
86' L. Koscielny
 (assist by Cazorla)

Lineups

# Player Bookings
21
4 80'
28 44'
6 86' 86'
25
7 62'
8
19 83'
16
14
12 3' 74'
Coach: A. Wenger

Substitutes

# Player Bookings
33 89'
44
11
13
14
22
26

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