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Fantasy follow-up: Week 18

Premier Fantasy
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Rewind to Boxing Day 1963

Barclays Premier League
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By ESPN Staff

Clichy gunning for something 'great' next season

Gael Clichy has no doubt the Arsenal squad will stay together and return stronger next season to 'do something great'.

The Gunners still have a mathematical, albeit improbable chance to win the Barclays Premier League title, as they trail leaders Manchester United and Chelsea by four points with two games to play.

Those slim hopes, though, could well be extinguished this weekend, bringing to an end a season which promised so much but failed to deliver.

Manager Arsene Wenger remains convinced his current squad - who led the table until the end of February - can achieve great things.

However, the future of out-of-contract midfielder Mathieu Flamini has yet to be resolved as AC Milan continue to turn his head, while both Alexander Hleb - suspended for the rest of the season - and leading scorer Emmanuel Adebayor have both been linked with big-money moves away from Emirates Stadium in the summer.

Clichy, signed from AS Cannes in 2003, sees no reason why everyone cannot achieve what they want to with the Gunners - and insisted success would not be guaranteed elsewhere.

'It's up to everyone to think what they want to do, but we've got so many examples of players who leave to win the Champions League and titles, and that didn't prove them right,' Clichy, 22, told www.setantasports.com.

'I think that we have to believe in the quality we have in the team at the moment.

'I believe in it, most players believe in it and I am sure we can do it.

'So we just have to stick together and work hard because with the team we have, we're so young, the future is in front of us and we're going to do something great that's for sure.'

Togo frontman Adebayor took his tally to 30 with a second-half hat-trick in the 6-2 thrashing of relegated Derby on Monday night.

The 24-year-old remains fully committed to the Arsenal cause, with his agent rubbishing reports of a switch to AC Milan, who Adebayor helped knock out of the Champions League with a goal at the San Siro earlier this season.

'We have not received concrete offers,' said Adebayor's representative Stephane Courbis.

'Obviously, it is logical that Emmanuel is demanded.

'I have to meet his club when the season ends to speak about his future.

'Today he is happy at Arsenal, he showed it on Monday, but you know football, everything goes very quickly.

'However, we will not talk before the season ends, as Arsenal are focused on trying to finish second.'

One player who could well be on his way out of Emirates Stadium, though, is Flamini.

Wenger has given the 24-year-old to the end of the month to decide on a lucrative new offer, understood to be around £55,000-a-week over five years.

However, free agent Flamini could earn considerably more elsewhere.

Last week, Wenger warned Inter Milan off Hleb following comments about their interest in his winger, and is unlikely to be impressed by the public thoughts of Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti on how he rates midfielder Flamini, currently sidelined by an ankle injury.

'Along with (Rino) Gattuso and (Massimo) Ambrosini, he can bring strength and substance without losing any quality,' said Ancelotti.

'Flamini has exceptional dynamism, he can play three roles, even in front of defence.'

Elsewhere, reports in Greece claim promising teenager Nikos Karelis has been given a trial with the Arsenal youth squad for a mini-tournament in Italy.

'I know that it will be very difficult to start with, but I am going there to succeed,' said the 16-year-old striker, who became the youngest player to play in a Greek Super League game with Crete club Ergotelis last weekend.

'Even if I don't make it, I think I will gain lots of useful experience that will help me improve in the future.'