Per Mertesacker admits Arsenal had to withstand plenty of pressure before running out comfortable winners at KC Stadium on Sunday.
Hull City fielded two strikers and that made life hard for Mertesacker and his centre-back partner, Laurent Koscielny. But after some anxious moments in the first half, Aaron Ramsey's strike and a Lukas Podolski brace saw Arsenal home.
"I think at the start, Hull played very well, they put pressure on us all the time," Mertesacker told Arsenal Player. "They played with two strikers Jelavic and Long. They played quite decent together as well so it was quite tough.
To cover each other is a vital point. We didn't do enough of that in the first 15 or 20 minutes but after it was much easier, especially in the second half
"We were lucky [at times] but overall when it was really, really close we had a good response.
"I think the whole team has to switch on quicker than normal to avoid those balls behind us [when we face two strikers]. I got booked very early so I always had to be aware.
"To cover each other is a vital point. We didn't do enough of that in the first 15 or 20 minutes but after it was much easier, especially in the second half, we got more possession, we were more dangerous and we've got some decent finishers in our team as well.
"That made it much easier in the second half to have better possession and play all the way through. We didn't lose a lot of balls in the middle of the park, that's what hurts us a lot. But we avoided that."
Having drawn the sting from Hull's strong start, Mertesacker got a front-row view of Arsenal's rejuvenated strikeforce at its fresh, fluent best.
"We need these moments where you can see we've got great players and some great finishers with Lukas Podolski on the scoresheet and Aaron Ramsey back on track, Mesut back on track," he said. "All these players could make a difference.
"When you have your whole squad together for as long as possible, that can make a difference. We suffered a bit in the second part of the season but now everyone is… coming back to full fitness. We've had some long-term injuries and it's good to have them all back."Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source