Gabriel Paulista refuses to give up on Arsenal's hopes of Champions League progression

Arsene Wenger

The Gunners look in serious danger of not qualifying for the next phase of the competition.

Arsenal defender Gabriel Paulista has insisted that the Gunners are not thinking about the possibility of not qualifying from their Champions League group, the Daily Express report.

Arsene Wenger's men need to win both of their remaining fixtures and hope that other results go their way to stand a chance of making it to the last 16 of the competition.

Despite the odds being stacked against the Gunners, the centre-back is adamant that the side are only concentrating on picking up victories against Dinamo Zagreb and Olympiakos. 

"We could still qualify from our group in the Champions League, so I'm not thinking about the Europa League," he said.

"I think that we need to focus on winning these next two decisive games and what happens with the other results determines whether we will qualify or not," he added.

While a win in the first of those two games may not be enough to keep their hopes of progression alive, Wenger will surely be encouraging his players to get back to winning ways after slipping up against West Bromwich Albion last weekend.

In previous years, an exit from one competition has often coincided with a poor run of form that has either seen them eliminated from another, or ended their chances of clinching the league crown.

While it is much too early to rule the north London side out of the title race, even if they do go on a dreadful run, losing in Croatia may well lead to a dip in confidence that causes them to fall well off the pace domestically. 

Even if a victory on Tuesday proves not to be enough to keep the Gunners in the Champions League, the confidence they will get from defeating Zagreb will banish the negativity following Saturday's poor result at the Hawthorns, and may help get their title challenge back on track.

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