Champions League crunch match will not distract Wenger

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

Arsene Wenger will be more focused on winning the Premier League than the Champions League this season, Sunderland boss Sam Allardyce has warned.

Arsenal face a win-or-bust encounter against Olympiakos next Wednesday, where the Gunners need to win by two clear goals to qualify for the knock-out stages of the Champions League.

That could be a potential distraction for the hosts when Sunderland travel to the Emirates tomorrow, particularly as a serious of injuries have restricted Wenger’s options to shuffle his pack.

But with Arsenal just two points off top spot, Allardyce believes Wenger will sense an opportunity to lift the Premier League title this season for the first time since 2003-04.

And after failing to secure a win in their last three games, the visit of Sunderland provides the Gunners with an opportunity to put their title bid back on track.

“I don’t think the Olympiakos tie is a distraction for Arsene because he’s got a very, very good chance of winning the Premier League,” said Allardyce.

“He’s got a bigger chance of winning the league than winning the Champions League.

“I’m not trying to predict what Arsene is saying or doing. He’s too good a manager for me to do that.

“I’m just giving an opinion.

“If I was looking at it that way, I’d be making sure I was beating Sunderland before even thinking about that game.

“The last two results in terms of losing at West Brom and only drawing at Norwich, means it’s crucial he gets back on track.

“I’m sure he’s trying to push that onto his players.

“Our job is to try our very best to not let him to do that.”