Arsenal v Monaco: fixture facts and reaction

AS Monaco FC's Leonardo Jardim says his team will be the underdogs when they play Arsenal FC in a round of 16 tie that will mark the return of Arsène Wenger to the principality.

Arsène Wenger will return to Monaco in March
Arsène Wenger will return to Monaco in March ©AFP/Getty Images

• While Arsenal and Monaco have never met before competitively, Arsène Wenger was in charge of Monaco between 1987 and 1994, winning Ligue 1 (1988) and the Coupe de France (1991). Wenger also took Monaco to the 1992 European Cup Winners' Cup final, losing 2-0 to SV Werder Bremen.

• The teams played in pre-season on 3 August in north London, Monaco prevailing 1-0 with a goal from the now departed Radamel Falcao.

• Monaco have lost only one of their six European home games against English sides, winning four, including the last two. The first such fixture brought an 8-0 triumph against Swansea City AFC in the 1991/92 Cup Winners' Cup first round second leg, still their record victory in UEFA competition; Wenger was at the helm.

• Monaco beat Chelsea FC 3-1 in their 2003/04 UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg, and progressed to the final having come back from two goals down to draw the Stamford Bridge return 2-2.

• Arsenal have never lost away to a French side, recording seven wins and three draws. Their most recent trip brought a 2-1 victory at Olympique de Marseille in last season's UEFA Champions League group stage.

Leonardo Jardim
Leonardo Jardim©Getty Images

Andrea Raggi, Monaco defender
It will be a huge tie. It is nice that we can start the tie at Arsenal and then play the return at home. I am convinced we have a great chance. The main thing is to focus, be determined and play with all the qualities we have shown across our matches in the Champions League this season. We have one of the best defences in the competition and must continue to defend well by closing up the gaps. We have to be fully focused and play with humility and character.

Leonardo Jardim, Monaco coach
Arsenal are a very good team. They will be favourites to win this tie. They're used to playing in this type of game, in big competitions. That's why they are favourites to go through. They have many experienced players, such as Olivier Giroud and Alexis Sánchez, but we will play to win, like always.

Watch: David Miles on Monaco tie
Watch: David Miles on Monaco tie

David Miles, Arsenal club secretary
First of all, we're pleased to be here. When you think this is our 17th consecutive season in the Champions League, and our 12th consecutive season getting through the group stage, it's a fantastic achievement for Arsène Wenger and the club. We're delighted to still be playing in Europe's premier competition.

Whoever we played would have been tough. And I know people will say we have a favourable draw, but nevertheless it's going to be difficult. Monaco have earned the right to be there, the same as we have, and I'm sure Arsène will be delighted to go back to one of his former clubs. Everyone at the club is looking forward to it.

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