London: The German attacker believes his former club are a massive threat to the Gunners` Champions League hopes, but has backed his team to advance over two legs.
Arsenal forward Lukas Podolski has conceded that Bayern Munich are favourites to progress to the Champions League quarter-finals, but insists his side are capable of an upset.
The 27-year-old played for Bayern for three years and admits the runaway Bundesliga leaders are a fearsome prospect ahead of Tuesday’s first-leg clash at the Emirates Stadium, though has backed the Gunners to triumph over two legs.
He told Die Welt: “Bayern are favourites, no doubt about that. In two games we will have our chances to reach the next round. You can be sure we will not sit and wait to find out what Bayern do. We have the quality to stand our ground against them.
“They [Bayern] are playing a sublime season. They are the clear number one in Germany and also are among the top two, three teams in Europe. It looks like they have decided the [league] championship but they now face us in the Champions League.
“Overall, I had a good time in Munich. Good contacts and friendships emerged from that. They are important to me. In life, football is not everything. I am looking forward to those matches against Bayern especially as it is nice to meet up with Uli Hoeness or Jupp Heynckes once again."
Arsenal crashed out of the FA Cup on Saturday with a shock 1-0 defeat to Championship side Blackburn, but Podolski is looking at the side`s good form prior to that loss as an indicator of the Gunners` chances against the German giants.
He continued: “I have a good feeling as it was going pretty well for us over the past few weeks.
“Arsene Wenger is a great personality, a fine person. He has got a clear idea of football. He sets great values upon possession of the ball and wants us to quickly get into an attacking position. He does not want to park the bus.
“Wenger’s philosophy is that Arsenal attack. It is understood that this does not always work out but he has coined this style since his arrival in 1996.”