Belgian says the club owe Arsene Wenger.
Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen says the team are desperate to beat Bayern Munich to pay back under-fire boss Arsene Wenger.
The Gunners face the Bavarians in Wednesday’s Champions League last-16 second leg, trailing 3-1 from last month’s meeting at the Emirates Stadium.
Bayern have been imperious so far this season and top the Bundesliga by a whopping 20 points, having not lost since October.
Vermaelen has refused to write off Arsenal’s chances in the Allianz Arena, however, and says the side are desperate to beat the Germans to give something back to Wenger.
“We owe the manager. We want to give him something back because he gives us confidence and belief,” the 27-year-old Belgian is quoted as saying by Goal.com.
The centre-half pointed to last year, when the Gunners nearly overturned a 4-0 loss to AC Milan at the same stage with a 3-0 victory at the Emirates Stadium, as evidence the team can perform when required.
“We go into this game to win and get through. Last year against Milan we almost did it and most people thought it was impossible.
“In football anything can happen. Of course it’s difficult but we believe in it and football is a strange sport.”
Vermaelen and his fellow defenders have been fiercely criticised by sections of the Arsenal support this season and the Belgium international is facing being dropped for the Bayern clash, with fit-again Kieran Gibbs likely to be given the nod at left-back.
The skipper acknowledged the problems faced by the Gunners back-four but insisted efforts were being made to rectify them.
“We are working on the defence every day of the week. We always take it personally.
“You have to keep going and not care too much about what people say.”
Failure to overcome the 3-1 deficit in Germany will see the Gunners go an eighth successive season without a trophy, while the club are also struggling to finish in the Premier League top four at present.