Jens surprised to be dropped
By Thomas Zeh
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Jens Lehmann has admitted he was surprised to learn he was being dropped by Arsenal.Jens Lehmann has admitted he was surprised to learn that he was again being rested for the Champions League win over Rosenborg.
The German international was dropped for last weekend's Premiership victory over Birmingham with Manuel Almunia taking his place between the posts.
Lehmann revealed he has missed his side's last two games as Gunners boss Arsene Wenger does not believe he is fresh at present.
"Wenger told me that he believes that I am not fresh at the moment," Lehmann told Bild.
"To me this came as a surprise as I am in shape to perform well at any time."
Wenger's surprising decision to leave out Lehmann could be a serious blow to the player's attempts to replace Oliver Kahn as national boss Jurgen Klinsmann's number one choice.
Klinsmann's assistant Joachim Low has tipped Lehmann to bounce back from the disappointment and quickly regain his place in the Arsenal side.
"We don't lose a thought on this as we are sure Jens will continue to play for Arsenal," said Low.
Meanwhile, Almunia insists he does not feel under any pressure after getting the nod to replace Lehmann.
The Spaniard admitted he was surprised to be given a chance in the first team and he is determined to make the most of his opportunity by keeping his place in the side for this weekend's title showdown with Chelsea.
"I am confident if the manager picks me for Sunday. I am experienced and I want people to talk about the good things I have done," said Almunia.
"It was a surprise to me when I was picked last week and I am pleased that the manager trusted me. But I do not feel under pressure and am not worried. I am happy with my work."