‘It was tough but we were professional’

Arsene Wenger said ahead of Monday’s Emirates FA Cup tie at Sutton that it would be “inexcusable and unexplainable” not to take the non-league side seriously.

The players responded with a professional performance to take us through to the last eight of the competition with goals from Lucas and Theo Walcott.

That said, Sutton gave as good as they got for long periods of the game. Wenger was highly impressed with our opponents.

“I must say, you see as well now in these leagues they last 90 minutes at a Premier League level,” he told Arsenal Player. “That has changed compared to 20 years ago. They’re all fit, they all kept going and it was very difficult for us.

“You have to congratulate the professionalism of the team, the effort we have shown and the resilience again. We didn’t concede a goal and overall I think we were questioned after the Bayern Munich game but I think we responded in a very professional way.” 




Our record on artificial pitches was played 14 won two ahead of Monday night, and the surface certainly made our task more difficult.

“I must say, it’s very different because every little technical inaccuracy, you lose the ball because the ball is so quick,” said Wenger. “They are used to it and they took advantage of it.

“We needed to adjust and I think even sometimes we played too many long, high balls and lost some balls that we are used to. On that pitch we just had to keep the passes as simple as possible and keep it on the ground.”


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