A round up of the latest news and transfer stories about Arsenal.
Arsenal have been handed a difficult last 16 Champions League tie against Bayern Munich. The Gunners will take on the side that put them out of this competition last season as they seek to try and secure a place in the quarter-finals.
The draw has prompted mixed reaction from players and supporters across Europe. Bayern Munich star Jerome Boateng has described Arsenal as the worst possible draw for the German side despite the bookies making Bayern the early favourites for the tie.
Current winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain says he’s relishing the test, stating that Arsenal have to beat the best in Europe’s biggest competition in order to be the best.
“We managed to get a good result away at Bayern last season so that brings back good memories. If you’re trying to do well in the competition you’ve got to beat the best teams,” he told the Arsenal website.
Meanwhile, Arsenal’s youngsters have been handed a difficult tie in the UEFA Youth League with a last 16 clash against Shakhtar Donetsk. Arsenal have home advantage and unlike the Champions League, it will be a singled legged tie.
In other news, Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere has praised Arsenal supporters for the way they backed the side against Manchester City. Arsenal were well backed throughout the game at the Etihad Stadium despite eventually losing the match 6-3.
Negotiations over a new contract for Arsenal defender Bacary Sagna go on with no agreement having yet been reached. Sagna’s current deal expires at the end of the season but he remains confident his relationship with the club will generate a swift conclusion.
In transfer news today, the Gunners have once again been linked with 25-year-old Olympiacos striker Konstantinos Mitroglou. With Arsenal on the look out for a forward this winter, the striker’s coach has admitted it could be hard to keep him.
“If he keeps on doing well, it will be hard to keep him. We’ve known for some time that there has been interest from many clubs but that’s only logical considering how well he has been doing lately,” said Jose Miguel Michel.
Another forward that the Gunners have been linked with in the recent past is Brazilian Alexandre Pato. However, his current employers Corinthians have confirmed there have been no bids for the former AC Milan man.
“We can negotiate about him, like any player. But in order to have a negotiation, there must be clubs interested in signing him and Pato has so far not asked to leave,” Corinthians director Roberto de Andrade told O’Globo.
News which broke this morning also casts doubt over a potential move for Barcelona youngster Antonio Sanabria. The teenager has a £3.6 million release clause written into his current contract with the Spanish club which means Arsenal will have to pay at least that to make a deal possible.
image: © michael hilton