Wenger on Barca, Atleti & Madrid

Arsene Wenger has claimed that Barcelona aren’t the side they once were, but believes they can compete for European success.

The Blaugrana face Manchester City this evening in the Last 16, and the Arsenal boss has conceded that he can’t wait to watch the tie.

“If I really thought about whether Barca are dominating in Europe as they did in recent years, I would say no,” he wrote in his Eurosport blog.

“But if you asked me if they can still win the Champions League, I would say so.

“I really want to see their tie with City because I love the way Barca play. They're still a team with great offensive strength but they will have to be strong in defence to stop from conceding goals at City.”

The French tactician also went on to praise Carlo Ancelotti’s Real Madrid, and believes that Atletico Madrid could also go far in Europe.

“Meanwhile, Real Madrid's tie seems somewhat more favourable to Los Blancos. Schalke are able to play great football but Real Madrid start as favourites.

“Ancelotti has balanced the team and they have become much stronger in the past two months.

“When you lose the ball and you have Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo against you, you have to hope you have many players defending as they don't need many to do you harm.

“I see Atletico have been very strong and are extremely good at getting results this season.

“In La Liga they have kept track with Barcelona and Real Madrid and look particularly strong in defence.

“Moreover, they have Diego Costa who is extremely dangerous in counterattacks. I think Milan will have a hard time against Atletico.”

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