It has been reported that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has declared that they are ready for a hostile welcome by Besiktas fans tomorrow for the first-leg of their Champions League qualifier.
With Besiktas’ Vodafone Arena ground being redeveloped, Tuesday night’s match will take place at the 72,000-seater Ataturk Olympic Stadium, where Liverpool famously beat AC Milan in the 2005 Champions League.
Reports in Turkey suggest the home fans are preparing a hot reception for Wenger, whom they feel was critical of the club following their 8-0 defeat at Liverpool during the 2007/08 group stages.
“They are specialists at doing that. I never said that. They always create things like that. I am used to playing Turkish teams and I never said that,” Wenger replied.
Captain Mikel Arteta believes the players will relish the intimidating atmosphere.
“They will be in our face, but I like playing in atmospheres like that,” he said.
“It is different to what we are used to here in England and it’s attractive to the players.
“The pressure is on us to get through because they are expecting us to get through but we are facing a tough opponent with good players and experience in the Champions League, so it won’t be easy there.”