Arsenal not giving up on top four: Arsene Wenger
- Author: Julie Sanders Apr 18, 2017,
Apr 18, 2017, 19:37
Alexis Sanchez opened the scoring from a free-kick but Alvaro Negredo levelled before Mesut Ozil netted the victor.
Ozil's 71st-minute victor put Arsenal within seven points of fourth-placed Manchester City, and Wenger's men have a game in hand.
Although the Frenchman accepted that the display was far from flawless, Wenger was thrilled with the level of commitment from his players, having seen them crumble in a 3-0 loss at Crystal Palace last time out.
"I told them at half-time we needed to play forward a little earlier, and when we scored the goal we put them under real pressure". You've got to give it 100 per cent week in, week out, and maybe that had been slipping in the last few weeks. "We didn't give any chances away, we were quite solid".
"It was a testing point for us, mentally [at 1-1] it was a moment when I felt that "now we'll see where we go".
Laurent Koscielny, Rob Holding and Gabriel Paulista looked unsure at times, confused by their new roles in a back three.
It was yet another shaky display from the Gunners but under fire manager Arsene Wenger will be happy to take all three points after his gamble with a back-three paid off. & #8220;We let them have the ball somewhat more than we're used to. "We lost two games against West Brom and Crystal Palace where we had 70 percent of possession, and today we had a bit less". "But sometimes when a team lacks confidence, just to change the system can help to believe in something different".
Boro head coach Steve Agnew praised his players and is refusing to give up on the club's top-flight status.
Sanchez curled in a free kick right before halftime that was canceled out at the start of the second half by Alvaro Negredo.
Middlesbrough are the only side in English league football not to have won a league game during 2017 and that very bad run of form has put them perilously close to an immediate return to the Championship.
"We only need to keep the season alive. The players care. When you don't win your confidence goes quickly and comes back slowly, so of course you could feel even in the way we played that there was nervousness there".