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Wenger believes Arsenal is ready to come of age in the Champions League.

“I would say it’s the most mature squad I’ve had for a long time, because they are men. Certainly I haven’t had a squad of players [like this] for a long time, who have enough experience to compete.

“But I don’t think like that . I think I played over 170 games in the Champions League and it’s every time the same: you want to do well in the next one. My personal case is not at stake in that at all.”

Arsenal have gone out at the last 16 stage of the competition for the past six seasons and this could be Wenger’s final crack at European success as he is in the final year of his contract.

But Wenger admitted he has very deliberately built an older squad with more established signings in the hope they can give some experience to his younger players.

By Henry

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