Wenger stresses Arsenal belief after Barca win

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by ITN News

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Arsene Wenger accepts his Arsenal side remain Champions League underdogs despite their first-leg victory over Barcelona - but thinks a new-found self-belief could prove crucial.

Robin van Persie and Andrey Arshavin both scored in the last 12 minutes to turn imminent defeat into a famous victory at the Emirates, with David Villa on target in the first half.

That away goal - coupled with the 4-1 hammering Arsenal received at the Nou Camp last season - means Wenger still rates Barca as favourites to reach the quarter-final.

Yet he believes the fact that his side now know they can beat a side widely rated as the best in the world could play a vital role.

"I am highly delighted. It was a special football night," said Wenger.

"The game promised a lot and fulfilled that promise. It was two exceptional teams who tried always to be positive."

He added: "We are not favourites now, but what is important is the belief that we have a chance.

"Barcelona are still favourites. We know now that we can beat them, though. We did not know that last year.

"This gives us a chance to to go to Barcelona with belief. Every game is difficult but we will prepare well and be highly focused."