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Carabao Cup

View from the Dugout: Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola

22 February 2018

This Sunday sees Arsenal and Manchester City face off for the first piece of major silverware of 2017/18. The two managers have given their thoughts ahead of the Wembley showpiece.

Arsene Wenger – Arsenal

“Because Manchester City are dominating the league, that is in the head of everybody and so maybe we are more underdogs than in the FA Cup semi-final last year. But we have to believe in our quality, the history – the fact we have done it before [against Man City last year], shows you ‘why not do it again?’.

“You must have enough belief to think you can do it, that on the day you manage to turn up with the right spirit and the right mentality, the right belief.

“In the final, everyone says you have to be motivated, but it is about finding the right balance between focus, motivation and being relaxed enough to play our game. That will be the target again; to have a belief but to find that right balance.”

Pep Guardiola – Manchester City

“Finals are special. The final belongs to the players, how brave you are, the courage [with which] you play these kinds of games. Don’t have regrets after the game.

“We will try to do what we have done this season on Sunday, and after that we have six games to win to be champions, and win the most prestigious title in this country. I always say I prefer to play a final after winning a game.

“I would love to play having not dropped a competition, but we have to focus. Arsenal always play finals well, they are experienced in those kinds of games. They have good players in attack. Aubameyang, I know how good he is. They attack with a lot of players.

“I say the same thing I have always said – we will be judged by how many titles we win. We don’t expect to win titles to be happy, but of course we are judged on our title successes.”

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