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Guidolin trains Udinese's sights on Arsenal

Published: Tuesday 23 August 2011, 16.32CET
Francesco Guidolin says his Udinese Calcio side have "no margin for error" as they bid to overturn a 1-0 UEFA Champions League play-off deficit against Arsenal FC at the Stadio Friuli.
by Paolo Menicucci & Richard Aikman

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Published: Tuesday 23 August 2011, 16.32CET

Guidolin trains Udinese's sights on Arsenal

Francesco Guidolin says his Udinese Calcio side have "no margin for error" as they bid to overturn a 1-0 UEFA Champions League play-off deficit against Arsenal FC at the Stadio Friuli.

Francesco Guidolin says his Udinese Calcio side will have no room for manoeuvre when they host Arsenal FC at the Stadio Friuli trailing 1-0 from the UEFA Champions League play-off first leg, but promises: "We will give our all".

Guidolin believes his charges were too cautious in London last week and that Theo Walcott's fourth-minute strike has made Wednesday's task an arduous undertaking. "The return leg will be more difficult than the first one," said the 55-year-old. "We're up against one of the best teams in Europe and 1-0 is a tricky result because there is no margin for error.

"We will have to try to score but retain our balance and be conscious of Arsenal's ability to hurt us with their pace. We will have to do everything right and also need a bit of luck. However, we can still qualify; we did not lose 5-0 in London. Maybe we started with too much respect for our opponents in the first leg but credit to my players for not giving up after that goal."

Guidolin will again be without Antonio Floro Flores after a recurrence of the thigh injury that forced the striker to miss the first leg and centre-back Maurizio Domizzi is out with a thigh problem. "We have been preparing this game for 50 days so we will try to hide our weaknesses and expose theirs," said the coach, who may also be shorn of right-back Dušan Basta. "It's a unique opportunity for us, and we will give our all."

Guidolin's opposite number Arsène Wenger is looking for another "big performance" from his side, whose domestic campaign has started disappointingly. The Gunners have taken one point from their first two Premier League matches and lost 2-0 at home to Liverpool FC on Saturday, their first home reverse against the Reds in 11 years.

"It's a game of big importance for us," said the Frenchman. "It is important for us to lift the players because they were very disappointed [after losing to Liverpool]. We need to give them credit for their attitude and performance; it was very harsh to lose the way we did."

Although Jack Wilshere is not expected to recover from an ankle injury and Samir Nasri is finalising a move to Manchester City FC, Arsenal have captain Robin van Persie available after a one-match ban while Alex Song, Gervinho and Emmanuel Frimpong are eligible despite domestic suspensions. Central defender Laurent Koscielny suffered a back spasm on Saturday so Johan Djourou is expected to deputise after recovering from a hamstring complaint that forced him off in the first leg.

Last updated: 27/11/12 5.21CET

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