Olivier Giroud says Arsenal confident ahead of return meeting with Schalke

Olivier Giroud: Striker says Arsenal are confident ahead of return meeting with Schalke

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Olivier Giroud says Arsenal will be heading to Germany in confident mood ahead of facing Schalke again in the UEFA Champions League.

Second-half goals from Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Ibrahim Afellay secured Schalke a 2-0 win at Arsenal a fortnight ago and left Arsene Wenger's side second in Group B.

The Gunners warmed up for Tuesday's return meeting by producing a lacklustre display in losing 2-1 at Manchester United, but Giroud is feeling positive about the European encounter.

"We want to go to Germany with the idea of winning. We want to show our mental and technical qualities," Giroud told Arsenal Player.

"We go to Germany confident. I know that Schalke will consider Arsenal as a good team, so although they won the first leg, we know that they expect to play a hard game because we want to do better.

"I don't think we underestimated Schalke in the last match, I just don't think our overall performance was good enough on the night.

"Schalke are experienced in the Champions League and we had seen videos of them, and we had analysed their game and their qualities. We were not surprised by their qualities and their players.

"We must give credit to Schalke for their performance on the night, but now we know what we will be up against in Germany.

"We know that we have to play very well in Germany to make sure we come back home to London with some points."

Giroud now feels settled into the Arsenal side following his summer move from Montpellier, and scored his first Premier League goal at West Ham before the international break.

"I must say, I prefer English football because I have more invested in each match. You just have to be more physical and athletic in every single match," he said.

"There are no easy matches in England. You have to be ready to make contact with very hard defenders each time you go on to the pitch.

"I was ready for this challenge and I must say that I am not surprised at what I am now experiencing."