Arsenal: Eboue calls for Manchester United focus

Emmanuel Eboue feels Arsenal must put a potential clash against European giants Barcelona or Real Madrid out of their minds and focus fully on the "massive" showdown with Barclays Premier League title rivals Manchester United.

The Gunners secured their place in the last 16 of the Champions League with a 3-1 win over Group H whipping boys Partizan Belgrade at Emirates Stadium last night, ending the game with 10 men after Bacary Sagna's late dismissal.

However, as they could only finish runners-up to Shakhtar Donetsk - whom they had thrashed 5-1 at home earlier in the qualifying campaign -

Arsene Wenger's men will not be among the seeds for the knockout stage draw which takes place in Nyon, Switzerland next Friday.

Given domestic rivals United, Chelsea and Tottenham all won their respective groups, that means the Barclays Premier League leaders will now face either of the Spanish giants or one from German duo Bayern Munich and Schalke.

Arsenal were beaten in the quarter-finals by Barcelona last season, taken apart 4-1 during the second leg as Lionel Messi ran riot in the Nou Camp, while the prospect of Wenger tackling old adversary Jose Mourinho in Madrid would be another fascinating fixture.

Eboue, though, insists Arsenal must focus on the here and now - with their next game at Old Trafford on Monday night where Wenger's men will look to retain their place at the top of the table.

"It is the most important thing to go through. We are little disappointed, but that is football," the Ivory Coast international said.

"For us it doesn't matter who we play.

"We are strong so we need to concentrate, work hard and always be together - if we can continue to play like this then we can beat any

team.

"But we try to forget about the Champions League and think about the game against Manchester United on Monday.

"It is a massive game and it will be very difficult for both teams.

"We always believe in ourselves and we just need to continue how we are playing and if we do that, we can beat them."

Eboue added: "At the moment we are top of the league and we are happy about that.

"But we have to not put our head up, we have to keep it down and continue to work hard on the pitch."

Eboue came on during the first half last night to replace left-back Kieran Gibbs, who badly twisted his ankle.

The England international has already been ruled out of the United game, with the full extent of the injury set to be revealed by scans later today.

l

Leeds United web poll: Which striker should replace Chris Wood?