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Arsenal can lay down a marker

Arsenal
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Gillot hits out at critics

Bordeaux coach Francis Gillot has claimed his side are being unfairly singled out as the French media's whipping boys, despite enjoying "a better season than last year".

After finishing fifth in Ligue 1 in his maiden campaign at the Stade Chaban-Delmas, Gillot has this season guided Les Girondins into the quarter-finals of the Coupe de France and steered them to the last-16 of the Europa League, seeing off Dynamo Kiev en route before succumbing to Benfica.

However, his team's unappetising style of play, which has been criticised by his own players, such as Jaroslav Plasil, has meant few plaudits have come his way.

With Bordeaux currently ninth in the table, nine points adrift of third and a Champions League qualifying place, and boasting a scoring record better than only two of the French top-flight's strugglers, the club's press has been far from positive.

"People are taking pot-shots at us without understanding things. Firstly, you have to go all out in European competitions. We did that, but we suffered in the league, as do many teams playing in Europe, but nobody talks about that. We had a good run, and it went completely unnoticed. We're still in the French Cup, but that's gone unnoticed too," Gillot, whose side will face one of his former clubs, second division Lens, in the last eight of the domestic cup competition, said.

"We're the team to shoot down, the one to be criticised. It doesn't worry me. Go for it! I know that we're having a better season than last year, and perhaps there will even be a surprise at the end of the campaign."

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