Gunners goalkeeper insists not qualifying for Champions League will be huge blow even with Wembley joy
A RECORD seventh FA Cup success for Arsene Wenger at Arsenal will mean little to Petr Cech if they miss out on the Champions League.
The Gunners’ torrid season could end on a high if they beat Chelsea in the FA Cup final.
Yet Arsenal face Leicester at the Emirates tomorrow knowing they must win to stand any chance of finishing in the top four.
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Despite having played a game less, Wenger’s side are seven points behind fourth-placed Manchester City who they beat in the FA Cup semi-final on Sunday.
Goalkeeper Cech, while relishing the prospect of a final showdown against his former club Chelsea, said: “Obviously the FA Cup is at the end of the season so there’s a lot to happen before we play that game.
“Our target is to finish as high as possible. If we don’t qualify for the Champions League, it will be a big disappointment.
“We’re going to be under pressure in every game now because of the league position we are in — there’s no option but to win.
“We need to keep getting three points and hope we can get the automatic qualification for the Champions League next season.”
One major positive on Sunday was that despite falling behind to Sergio Aguero’s opener, Arsenal did not fall apart like they did in their 3-0 defeat at Crystal Palace.
Equally, Cech, 34, was irritated when asked about the accusation that Arsenal lack leaders in the team.
He said: “Although we fell behind against City, you could feel we felt it wasn’t a problem.
“We had 30 minutes and although in a game like Palace when we fell behind and it suddenly looked like we were not finding the answers, against City we had the belief. We need to carry that on.
“It’s easy to hide behind saying we lack leaders and other teams have them. You need to see what is happening behind the scenes, how well the team works and how we operate.
“You have periods where you prepare and do the right things then the game starts and it all goes wrong.
“We had a period where we lost games we shouldn’t have lost.
“Sometimes you find a way out quickly, sometimes it takes a bit of time and there is damage — this season we had that spell.
“When you lose three in four you put yourself in a difficult position.”
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain had cramp against City and is unlikely to face Leicester.