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Vieira on his Arsenal return

Vieira scores

Vieira scores

Patrick Vieira believes that City could be tackling his old club Arsenal at just the right time as the dash for a Champions League place heads for the tape.

But the veteran France midfielder shrugs off any notion that Arsene Wenger has lost his touch after the shock 3-2 defeat at Wigan condemned Arsenal to a fifth season without a trophy.

Manager Wenger admitted when his side surrendered a 2-0 lead that City or Tottenham might even snatch third place from the Gunners "so we have to win at least one more game".

Vieira said: "When you spend nine years at a club then to return will always bring back memories. It is always a pleasure to go back to Arsenal, but it's a must-win game for us.

I don't think Arsenal are at their best and maybe it's a good time to play them. It looks like they have lost their momentum and we will go there and have a shot

...Patrick Vieira


"I was surprised at the manner of the Wigan defeat and so were most people who saw the game. I felt frustrated for the fans. This is a tough, difficult time for Arsenal."

Wenger has predictably come under fire on radio phone-ins, with Arsenal as well as Liverpool being seen in some quarters as vulnerable in protecting their "big four" status.

Vieira said: "Opinions change so quickly in football - one year, one month, one week! Arsene has done a fantastic job and I'm sure his ambition is still as strong as it was ten years ago.

"He will want to take the team and the club on, and I'm sure that he is the right man to do that."

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Mancini scarf

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Pablo Zabaleta

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