Wenger praises Arsenal spirit despite Champions League exit

Arsene Wenger has praised the spirit and performance of his Arsenal players after the Gunners beat Bayern Munich 2-0 in the second leg of their Champions League second round fixture, but admitted to Sky Sports that the tie was lost in the first leg.

Bayern won 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium meaning Arsenal had to score three times without conceding in the return meeting at the Allianz Arena, a feat that eventually proved beyond them despite Olivier Giroud opening the scoring after just a few minutes of play. Laurent Koscielny added a second goal late on in the match but the Bundesliga leaders helped on to the away goal advantage.

Wenger said: “We were very, very close tonight…the spirit and the performance was there, and overall we had a great go. The regret we have tonight is from the first game. We conceded a very bad goal in the last 15 minutes. If we had lost 2-1 at home, you can see how important that goal is.

Arsenal now face an uphill struggle to qualify for next season’s Champions League, currently sitting fifth, five points behind Chelsea in fourth with 10 games to play. Arsenal next play Swansea City in the Premier League at the Liberty Stadium, having drawn 2-2 with the Welsh side in the FA Cup in Wales earlier this season.

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