Fabregas: We can beat anyone

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Football News

Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas is in no doubt the Gunners have the quality to beat whichever team they draw in the quarter-finals of the Champions League on Friday.

Holders Manchester United, German giants Bayern Munich and Barcelona - winners against Arsenal in the 2006 final - are the big hitters who the Gunners could be paried with, along with Villarreal and Porto, who topped the Gunners' opening group.

But Fabregas - who is closing in on a first-team return from a serious knee injury that has sidelined him since before Christmas - feels Arsenal should fear no-one, saying; "We know it will be tough in the next round but we also know we can beat any one of them."

All four English sides made it through to the last eight of Europe's elite club competition so an all-Barclays Premier League affair is a strong probability.

However, Arsenal, who secured their place with a dramatic penalty shoot-out win in Rome to beat Roma, have lost at the quarter-final stage twice before to teams from their own division - against Liverpool last year and to Chelsea back in 2003/2004, the season in which Arsene Wenger's side won the domestic title with an unbeaten record.

"We are in the quarter-finals, among the eight best teams in Europe, and we are there on merit," he added.

"We deserve to be there and it's serious now. If you want to win this competition you have to beat the best players in the world and now is that time."

Gunners boss Wenger is also not unduly concerned by who his team may face, insisting it is now all about how Arsenal perform.

"We know the other seven teams in the quarter-finals very well. We are confident we could beat any of them," he said.

"At this stage of the competition, I do not think it really matters who you play, so let us see who the draw gives us and knock them out."

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