By Richard Clarke

Mikael Silvestre feels that although Arsenal have proved their title credentials this season they must find some consistency if they are to have a chance of finishing top of the Premier League.

The Frenchman made his debut for the Club at left back in the 2-0 defeat at Porto on Wednesday. It was Arsenal’s sixth reverse in major competitions this season but, perversely, they have won their games against other members of the so-called ‘Big Four’.

As a veteran of numerous title-wins at Manchester United, Silvestre knows all too well that peak-and-trough performances will not be enough in the long run.

“We proved [by winning] against Man United and Chelsea that the quality is there so we just have to get the consistency,” he said.

“The season is long. It is difficult if you judge the team on the strength of Porto but you cannot expect to perform like that and win anything. The squad is big and there are going to be points to catch - on the road to Middlesbrough on Saturday first of all. It’s going to be tough but we have got time to grow up.

"We've made it difficult for ourselves so far but we are still in the race.”

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11 Dec 2008