Baptista - We are favourites
Julio Baptista feels Arsenal's depleted squad hands Roma the edge heading into Tuesday's encounter.
By James Dall
Last Updated: 24/02/09 7:44am
Julio Baptista feels Arsenal's depleted squad hands Roma the edge heading into Tuesday's UEFA Champions League tie at Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners will be without a number of key players, including captain Cesc Fabregas and striker Emmanuel Adebayor, for their last 16 encounter with Serie A giants Roma.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has maintained his charges still can defeat their opponents, but Baptista, who spent a season on loan in north London, thinks otherwise.
"I think we are favourites for this game without a doubt," the Brazilian said in the Daily Star.
"The absence of Fabregas, Adebayor, (Theo) Walcott and Eduardo is too much for Arsenal to handle at the moment. (Tomas) Rosicky is also out.
"We know that Arsenal are a dangerous team whatever side they put out, but missing all of these players will be a huge blow for them and affect their chances.
"We know that this will be a tough game with a cracking atmosphere. But we have proved ourselves in reaching the knockout stages so we have nothing to fear.
"The fact we play the second leg at home is a huge boost for us."