‘It took us a while to find our rhythm’

Like the rest of us, Arsene Wenger had to wait patiently for his side to make the breakthrough against Sunderland on Tuesday night.

Finally Alexis scored his 22nd and 23rd Premier League goals for the campaign to seal the win, and we kept the heat on our top-four rivals.

Afterwards he faced the media, and this is what he had to say:

on the game…
It was a game we had absolutely to win. We did it, we have 72 points now and we have to focus to get 75. That was not likely to happen three or four weeks ago but we need to patient a bit because we played Sunday, Wednesday, Saturday, Tuesday, with two difficult away games. It took us a while to get into our rhythm. In the second half, in the last 25 or 30 minutes, it happened.

on players having it in them to produce when it matters…
We won more games than last year, because we already have one point more than last year. We have gone through a difficult period away from home. At home, if you look at our record, it’s quite good. We have lost three away games recently that we should not have lost, at West Brom just before the international break, and after at Crystal Palace. Overall I’d say it’s away from home that we have lost our chances to win the championship. At home, our record is decent.


Arsenal celebrate Alexis scoring in the win over Sunderland


on turning point the away defeats v City and Everton…
I would say yes because in the two games we were leading 1-0 and we got caught in the second half. I think especially at Everton, we were really unlucky because some decisions were really bad on the night. After, we had to go straight to Man City and it didn’t help. We can talk and talk, but at the end let’s make 75 points. If you look at the number of points we can make, it’s one of the best in the last 10 years.

on the crowd and attendance…
It’s Tuesday night against Sunderland. Everybody expects us to win. I didn’t count the number of people who were in the seats.

on if it will be full on Sunday…
We are sold out.

on if it’s more difficult playing in front of empty seats…
No, we do our job and we have shown that again tonight. When you play football, you don’t count the people in the stands. You play because you want to win the game and because you enjoy to play.

on if Arsenal need a miracle to get into the top four…
No, you never know. But anyway, I answered for 20 years the question - ‘the top four is nothing special’. So I don’t know why suddenly it could become such a big problem. I’m quite surprised. I want to absolutely make sure that we are in there but after that let’s get to 75 points and see what happens. You want all the teams to fight like Sunderland did tonight. After, you have to accept the result. What is for sure, if we win our game, we can only be far from one point. Let’s give ourselves every chance.

on what percentage he puts on that…
I don’t even think about percentage, I just think about let’s make sure we win the game, because we play against Everton. Even if you only had one per cent, you would have to play at totally 100 per cent. I think we have a chance. It would be the first time you make 75 points and aren’t in the top four.


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