Arsenal make football 'fun' but must be 'streetwise' if…

… they want to slay Dortmund in Germany as two Gunners stars speak out on the brand of football adhered to at Shenley and Ashburton Grove.

The glut of midfield quality that Arsene Wenger can call upon has multiple benefits. Not only does it create greater competition for places while keeping his own options open, but it also means the Frenchman is able to survive injury crises.

Czech Republic international Tomas Rosicky has put forward a further benefit of having team-mates of the calibre of Mesut Ozil, Santi Cazorla, Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey… they all make playing football 'fun'.

He is quoted by Arsenal Player to have said: 'It's fun to play with players like Ozil and Cazorla. They can pass the ball so quickly and creatively. I think you can see we have fun on the pitch - if you have that, it's great.'

The club's creativity and fun factor was at it's most obvious during the October triumph over Norwich City, when Jack Wilshere rounded off a team goal that was celebrated by all who had participated in a build-up that confounded the Canaries.

What Arsenal need to be wary of, though, is becoming naive in their play - something they were guilty of when hosting Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League a fortnight ago. Arsene Wenger takes his team to Germany for Wednesday's return fixture and, if they are to return with a result, they must be more 'streetwise' in their football, according to Ramsey.

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'In the game at Emirates, we were a bit naïve - it should have at least finished as a draw. We switched off and they caught us on a counter-attack in the last 10 minutes and we paid the price, which will happen at this level. We will learn from that [but] we are confident. We will be a bit more streetwise going over there.'

Ramsey, who has scored four goals in five Champions League appearances this season, added that they will not be perturbed by the fiery atmosphere that their hosts fans will generate: 'The atmosphere in their stadium is tremendous but you want to be playing. Everyone in the team will be looking forward to it. We don't go anywhere with fear - we will approach it the same as any other game.'

The midweek match, contested on Wednesday, November 6, will have added incentive for Rosicky as the diminutive attacker used to be employed by BVB. He said: '[Dortmund] will definitely be [special] because I spent five and a half years there and in the 14 years I've played professional football, I’ve played for just three teams.

'I spent five years there, won the league there and played in the Uefa Cup final there so obviously I have a lot of attachments and it will be a special game for me.'

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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