Barcelona Champions League winner on how Arsenal can knock out his ex club
By Coral Barry
Barcelona Champions League winner Juliano Belletti has claimed Arsenal can dump his former club out of the competition.
The Spanish giants arrive in London ahead of the first leg of their last 16 tie with the Gunners on Tuesday night.
Despite only spending three years at Barcelona, the defender is remembered for scoring an 80th minute winner against Arsenal in the 2006 Champions League final.
That game remains the London club’s only appearance in the final of Europe’s leading competition and Barcelona have continued to torment them ever since, knocking them out in 2010 and 2o11.
Nevertheless, Belletti believes Arsenal have a chance.
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“Barcelona are not invincible. That’s one of the great things in football,” the Brazilian told Omnisport. “You can have a respected team with a lot of quality, but that doesn’t make it invincible.”
Barcelona currently have the most feared front three in world football, with Luis Suarez, Neymar and Lionel Messi plundering 91 goals between them this season.
The La Liga leaders are also on a 32-game unbeaten run and are overwhelming favourites to dispatch Arsenal once again.
Belletti, who also spent time at Chelsea, says that although Luis Enrique’s side are brilliant, Arsenal are also a team to be feared.
He said: “Arsenal are currently at the best level for many years and their confidence gives them a chance. They have already proved their quality.
“But then comes the hardest part: trying to prevent Barcelona from showing their best qualities. That’s really hard, especially with Barca’s attack.
“But it has happened before. This Barcelona team have lost and it can happen again. Football is the only collective sport in the world where the best team does not always win.”