By Richard Clarke

Arsène Wenger believes his side will find the defensive solidity required to become champions.

Arsenal went to the top of the table on Saturday after a nerve-wracking 2-1 victory over Fulham at Emirates Stadium. The home side were superb in the opening stages and went ahead through Samir Nasri.

However, as against Aston Villa and Tottenham, Wenger’s men became nervous when they conceded a goal. Only another Nasri special secured the three points.

“When we were 1-0 up it should have been two or three,” said Wenger. “But then you could sense suddenly in the team we had not the drive to go forwards any more and we invited them.

“We had some hesitations at the back and were not completely dominant, and we were punished because Fulham are a good side.

“But we have 32 points and I believe we have become stronger as a unit defensively because we feel that recently we have been punished a lot.

“Against Tottenham for example, you cannot say we conceded goals because they created the chances, it was goals we gave away. But, of course, we want to improve our defensive record. That is needed.

“Last season, overall, our defensive record was not good enough to win the title. But last season Chelsea didn’t drop points.

“They do this year, so it will be down to consistency. Of course, defensive solidity is linked to consistency and that is what we want to achieve.

“But we have an outstanding spirit and it was rewarded again with a special attitude. We have good ingredients to fight at the top, that is for sure.”

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6 Dec 2010