Arsenal beat Barcelona 2-1

Arsenal put in one of the best performances of Arsene Wenger’s reign last night, beating all-conquering European champions Barcelona 2-1 in a thrilling night’s Champions League football.

Two late goals from Robin van Persie and Andrey Arshavin meant that they came from behind against Barca, who had taken the lead in the first half thanks to a neat David Villa finish after 26 minutes, and despite the away goal, the Gunners are now confident that they can go to the Nou Camp and seal the tie.

‘We were not only strong on the physical side but on the mental side; we kept resilient,’ Wenger said. ‘We took advantage of one special piece of skill from (Robin) van Persie and that goal and the second was after some good build-up play.

‘Tonight's result gives us a chance to go to Barcelona with belief. It is a special lift for my team. Our players have shown exceptional strength tonight, and togetherness. This will enforce that. I am proud for Arsenal football club. Everyone urged us to play differently to our nature so it is good. I believe this can strengthen the belief in our philosophy. We know it will be a very difficult game (in Spain) but we will prepare well. We will be highly focused and we go to win our game. We will go for it.’

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