By Nick Ames
Robin van Persie believes Arsenal's recent form shows they can handle anyone at the top level.
Arsène Wenger's side have beaten Tottenham, Liverpool and AC Milan in their last three games, scoring 10 goals in the process and moving to within four points of third-placed Spurs in the Premier League.
Speaking in his captain’s notes for Monday's Official Matchday Programe, Van Persie hailed his team’s focus during a series of stern tests.
“We can look back at a hectic period and feel happy with how it’s gone so far,” he said.
“In the past couple of weeks we’ve had to bounce back from the defeat in Milan and Sunderland with fixtures against Spurs, Liverpool and Milan again, and that’s before I mention the international matches many of us had two and a half days before the game at Anfield.
“It’s the kind of intense programme that you only get once or twice a season, and we’ve shown lots of character during it. Everybody has handled it well and shown a really keen focus.”
Van Persie also paid tribute to Arsenal’s supporters, who created an electric atmosphere inside Emirates Stadium during those last two rousing home performances. Their vocal backing, he believes, makes a big difference.
“During that period, our fans have been incredible,” said Van Persie.
“I really mean that – the atmosphere in the stadium has reached unbelievable levels and that makes me feel very proud. I sometimes hear people saying that Emirates Stadium can be quiet, but I’m completely certain that those people will adjust their opinions now.
“Our bond with the supporters is special and has been there for a long time, but in the last few games I feel it’s reached a new level. As I’ve said before, it’s down to us to give them that energy, to show them that we are ready for the fight, and then they will respond.
"That’s what has happened recently – the fans and the players have worked together and made a really good team!”
- Read Robin's full captain's notes in Monday's Official Matchday Programme. Click here to subscribe