By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger will demand a response from his players after they crashed to a 3-2 defeat at Wigan on Sunday.

Arsenal were 2-0 up and cruising at the DW Stadium but collapsed in the final ten minutes, shipping three goals to stay six points behind Chelsea with three games left.

Wenger's team needs a footballing miracle to win the Premier League and must now focus on cementing third place ahead of Tottenham and Manchester City.

A win against City at Emirates Stadium next weekend should be enough to book a place in the group stage of next season's Champions League and Wenger expects his players to bounce back.

"It doesn't matter if it is difficult or not difficult [to raise ourselves], this job is not only for easy times, it is for difficult times as well, and we have to respond in the next game," said the manager.

"What dictates the championship is the performance on the pitch and you focus for 90 minutes and we weren't capable of maintaining that."

Goals either side of half-time from Theo Walcott and Mikael Silvestre appeared to have wrapped up three vital points for Arsenal at Wigan but Wenger was concerned long before the hosts’ stunning late show.

"Of course I was concerned," he said. "We were comfortable but not maybe as much as the players thought we were and we lost focus, discipline, and then we got caught.

"You could single out many things but we have to swallow the defeat and accept it because we cannot change the result now.

"At the end of the day we conceded three goals against a team that has struggled to score and we can only think about ourselves and our own mistakes."

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19 Apr 2010