UEFA.com works better on other browsers
For the best possible experience, we recommend using Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge.

Mature Gunners delight Wenger

Arsène Wenger praised Arsenal FC's growing maturity after they won at FC Steaua Bucureşti, but quashed early comparisons with the unbeaten team of 2003/04.

Arsène Wenger's side were always the more likely to win in Romania
Arsène Wenger's side were always the more likely to win in Romania ©Getty Images

Massimo Pedrazzini lamented FC Steaua Bucureşti's profligacy in front of goal after watching his team spurn a number of scoring opportunities in the 1-0 UEFA Champions League defeat by Arsenal FC. A second-half Robin van Persie strike broke the deadlock for Arsenal to leave Arsène Wenger full of praise for his young team's maturity as they maintained their 100 per cent start to Group H.

Massimo Pedrazzini, Steaua coach 
We knew that Arsenal are one of the best teams in the world and that it would be a very tough match, and indeed it was. But we played very well; the players gave everything, played with their hearts and souls and that's why I have to thank them. The most important thing is that they worked, fought and played together like a true team. Maybe a draw would have been fairer but we knew that when you play against a big team and you don't convert your few chances the opponent often takes theirs. Let's not forget that Arsenal are Arsenal and under those circumstances I think we had a very good match. Concerning the future, why should we think only about third place, why not second?

Arsène Wenger, Arsenal manager
We wanted to dictate the pace of the match and to score early but unfortunately we didn't manage this. We felt we would be the better team, and we were, but when you don't score you can become impatient. Fortunately, we didn't and patience means maturity. We kept our calm, played intelligently and scored for a well-deserved victory. I have to say that Steaua played well, their plan was to defend and to catch us on the counterattack. We were fully focused on the match and I am happy with the win, even if it was not a glamorous game. But obviously our players are hungry for success. It is too early to compare the run of 49 matches without defeat from 2004 with the run of nine matches without defeat this year. It is a challenge ahead of us and we will have to prove our consistency.