Wojceich Szczesny believes Arsenal’s backs-to-the-wall victory at Sunderland on Saturday speaks volumes for the team’s character.

The Gunners delivered a superb first-half display at the Stadium of Light and took the lead through Santi Cazorla’s fine strike.

However, Carl Jenkinson’s 62nd-minute red card changed the nature of the game and the visitors had to hold firm against incessant Sunderland attacks to claim a hard-fought three points.

Szczesny reaction
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 “I thought we deserved the win and the urgency in our own penalty area was fantastic,” Szczesny told Arsenal Player.

“Bacary [Sagna] came in at centre back and cleared everything that came into the box. It was difficult once Carl got sent off, and we were playing with a back four that had never played together. But I thought they all did a tremendous job.

“Every ball that was played across, we were the first to clear it, so they deserve a lot of credit for the way we played.

“I think we proved to a lot of people that we have what it takes to be successful because it wasn't the best game in terms of quality, but we showed everyone the character and desire we have to get a result.

“We are delighted with the way we won the game. You always expect a very tough game when you go up north; they play very direct football and are very strong. They had a real desire to get a result and I thought Sunderland played really well, but we stood up against it and showed character.”

Copyright 2014 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 Rob Kelly 11 Feb 2013