Bayern wary of 'stronger' Arsenal
Boateng shows Arsenal respect
Bayern Munich are expecting a much sterner test from Arsenal in the Champions League last-16 this season, but remain confident they will emerge victorious to advance to the quarterfinals.
Arsenal gave Bayern a scare last season as the Bundesliga team went on to win the European crown. They showed their class at the Emirates and beat Arsene Wenger's team 3-1, but in the return leg they escaped with a 2-0 defeat that was enough to make it to the last-eight on the away goals rule.
"This game is different to last year. Arsenal is never easy but they are a better team this time," Javi Martinez insisted.
"They made us suffer in Munich last year and we know how important it is to score in London. If we can do that, then we believe we can go through. But they have better players, a confidence and Mesut Ozil is a decisive player for any club. I am still surprised Real Madrid let him go."
On Monday, Bayern centre-back Jerome Boateng echoed Martinez's thoughts and said that Arsenal are "much stronger" this season. "Mesut Ozil is their key figure," said Boateng who was wary of his Germany teammate. "We have to go out there and show we're superior. We don't want to be chasing a result in the return."
Bayern captain Philipp Lahm is also optimistic, believing that should Bayern stick to their possession game and create chances, then Pep Guardiola's side will be able to exploit Arsenal's weaknesses in defence.
"We won't be playing for a goalless draw. Obviously, we want to win in London," Lahm said. "It won't be easy. Their confidence will be soaring after they beat Liverpool at the weekend."