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Arteta warns of Wigan threat

Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta has told his club's official website that Wigan will "play for their lives" in Tuesday night's crucial game at Emirates Stadium.

• Wenger: Destiny in our hands
• Arsenal blog: Deja vu

Wigan need to back up their FA Cup triumph over Manchester City on Saturday with a Premier League victory against Arsenal if they are to sustain their battle to stay avoid relegation until the final weekend of the campaign.

The Latics can guarantee their survival should they defeat Arsenal and then Aston Villa at the weekend, but the Gunners will be just as motivated to claim victory on Tuesday as they look to move ahead of North London rivals Tottenham in the race for a top-four place, and Arteta is expecting a tough battle.

"They will play for their lives," Arteta said. "For them, it's massive to stay in the Premier League. I'm sure they will give everything they've got. It's a massive game for us and it's going to be tough. I think everyone from the staff to the fans have to be ready to help.

"It helps when you have the fans behind you and we have examples when they have been absolutely magnificent. You just play with an extra man. The confidence and belief they give you just throws you forward.

"That's what we need. We need to have an atmosphere. It's the last game of the season at home and I think people are going to be up for it."

Arteta said he was unsure how Wigan's Wembley success will affect them but - after Wigan picked up a deserved 2-1 win at Arsenal last season - Arteta has reminded his team-mates that Roberto Martinez's men are more than capable of providing an upset.

"I don't know how much they've got in the tank but, whatever they've got, they are going to give it everything," he added. "They are a dangerous team as they showed here last year when they played against us.

"You never know what the reaction is going to be (to their FA Cup win). When you're not used to winning, you don't know what the reaction is going to be because you can't really compare with the past and the way they reacted.

"They have been playing very well and I don't think they've been rewarded with points when they've deserved them."


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