By Nicholas Ismail

Per Mertesacker has emphasised how vital Petr Cech’s experience of winning at Stoke City can be for this weekend’s clash at the Britannia Stadium.

Cech has only lost one of his last six Premier League matches at Stoke - winning three and drawing two - while Arsenal have won one of their last eight away matches against the Potters.

After being 3-0 down in last season’s corresponding fixture, Mertesacker has expressed a need for the Gunners to start strongly at Britannia Stadium.

We have to focus on things we haven’t done in the last couple of years

Per Mertesacker

“It’s going to be tough game, but we have got Petr Cech in the squad who has won there in recent years,” he said. “We keep trying to ask him what [they] have done maybe different to us.

“We have got more experience in the squad now, but we need to turn up with the right performance from the start.”

“We haven’t done well in the last couple of seasons so it is a good challenge for us if we can turn it around and win there. It will be a good chance for us to get confidence that we can go through difficult periods, that we can win at Stoke.

“That’s why we have to focus on things we haven’t done in the last couple of years.”

“We keep losing at the start there. We were 3-0 down last year, and came back to 3-2 but you could see at times we need to survive the first half and try to focus on the first minutes.

“If we can do that then we have a good chance, especially in the second half when we’re used to playing better, used to control the ball much better, [making] less mistakes.”

Petr Cech
Petr Cech

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17 Jan 2016