Arsenal boss targeting automatic Champions League qualification

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has set his target for the remainder of the season, according to reports from BT Sport.

The Gunners manager is aiming to win seven of their remaining Premier League fixtures, which would guarantee them a place in the top-four.

With only three points separating the Gunners in third and Liverpool in sixth, Wenger knows that his side will need to beat relegation battlers Queens Park Rangers on Wednesday to keep them in a place to qualify for the Champions League next season.

The North London club also have a mountainous task of trying to overturn a 3-1 result when they travel to Monaco for their second leg Champions League round-of-sixteen clash.

However, Wenger has guided Arsenal into the formerly named European cup the last 15 consecutive seasons, and is determined to do so once again by the end of the campaign.

“Seventy-two,” he replied when asked how many points he will need.

“People have finished in the top four with 67 points, but if you look at this year we have 51 points now. So it will be in the 70s. It is a tough run-in but it will be similar to last year.

“Look, have you seen the quality of the teams behind us? Southampton, Tottenham, Liverpool, Manchester United. The best way is to look forward and go as fast as we can.

“It will be down to consistency because mathematically it is not impossible for the guys behind us to catch us, but also for us to catch the teams in front of us. You just have to focus on yourself and win the next game.

“It has not been every year, but when you have to go through the qualifiers you are not in the Champions League.

“It is better that you finish in the top three than the top four. Fourth is not a guarantee of Champions League football.

“The only thing you can say is that (this season) it is very tight. You look in front of you, Manchester City are four points ahead of us, and you look behind you, there’s plenty of people chasing us.

“That will be very, very tight and it will be down to consistency in our results and mental strength. That will certainly be needed again on Wednesday night.”

Meanwhile Gunners midfielder Francis Coquelin, who fractured his nose during the weekend, is expected to start against QPR with a protective mask at Loftus Road.

 


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