Arsenal's "fighting spirit" has returned, says Wenger

Solenn Plantier
Mai 16, 2017

Arsenal enjoyed an impressive 4-1 win at Stoke City on Saturday.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is adamant the Gunners' "fighting spirit" has returned after his side completed a third Premier League victory in a week to roar back into contention for a top-four finish.

Mesut Ozil also scored, finishing off a slick team move that showed the confidence Arsenal is starting to play with.

The formation sees the Germany worldwide and Alexis Sanchez line up behind a lone striker, Olivier Giroud against Stoke, and the trio combined to score all four of Arsenal's goals at the bet365 Stadium.

Jurgen Klopp's men travel to West Ham on Sunday (kick-off 14:15 BST) and play Middlesbrough on the last day of the season, while the north London club host Sunderland on Tuesday and Everton in their final league match next weekend.

"When you go to places like Stoke, you need at some stage to suffer and stick together, and that's what we did", Wenger told the BBC.

Southampton strengthened its chances of securing a top-half finish with this win, secured by goals by Jay Rodriguez and Nathan Redmond either side of halftime.

Arsenal are now one point behind Liverpool, with both teams having two games left to play.

Substitute Crouch brought Stoke back into the game in the 67th minute when he used his forearm to propel Marko Arnautovic's left-wing cross past Petr Cech at the near post.

Mahrez beat Willy Caballero with 13 minutes remaining but had slipped in his run-up and inadvertently struck the ball twice, once with each foot.

Gabriel Jesus doubled City's lead from the penalty spot, with Shinji Okazaki halving the deficit by hooking a stunning volley into the top-right corner.

Wenger replied, "Yes", with a smile when asked if he would be a West Ham fan for 24 hours, and said: "I think one of the qualities of the Premier League is that, historically, there is a pride in every team to give their best until the end of the season".

"It's a huge result for us", said Swansea manager Paul Clement.

Wenger again stressed there was no update on his future following a report in France that suggested he would sign a new one-year deal and swiftly turned his attention to Wednesday's (AEST) home match against relegated Sunderland.

Hughes said: "Them scoring just before half-time was obviously a blow to us and then, conceding the second goal, it is hard from that point onwards".

But he will be pleased with the way his players have responded with the campaign coming to a close, taking five wins from their past six league games - the only blemish a weak display in their defeat by Tottenham. "You've got to take silverware".

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