Wembley

Next Game

Arsenal v Chelsea

Sunday, 02 August 2015, 15:00

FA Community Shield

Emirates Stadium

Last Game

Arsenal 1 - 0 Wolfsburg

Sunday, 26 July 2015, 16:20

Emirates Cup

Defenders delight Wenger

Arsene Wenger has paid tribute to Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker for their contribution to Arsenal's flying start to the season.

Last Updated: 09/11/13 at 13:46 Post Comment

Arsene Wenger: Defensive improvements have helped raise level

Arsene Wenger: Defensive improvements have helped raise level

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

The Gunners head to Old Trafford on Sunday on the back of impressive clean sheets against Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund, and although their goals against record is not the best in the Premier League, their stability at the back has been an improvement on last season.

Mertesacker and Koscielny have proved difficult to beat and their form has been good enough to keep club captain Thomas Vermaelen on the bench.

And Wenger hopes they will continue to impress when Arsenal go in search of a first win at Old Trafford since 2006 in a game that brings an end to Super Sunday Hat-Trick on Sky Sports 1.

"We have had two clean sheets now in two big games and you never do that without a huge contribution from your centre-backs," Wenger said.

"It is a mixture of quality, being calm, confidence and not panicking in very heated situations. At the moment, they are at their peak in these kind of situations.

"There is now a little bit of an extra focus on defending, because we are naturally a team which is built with attacking players, so in the big games, these guys force a bit their natural tendency and so we maybe have a bit more of a defensive urgency.

"Their nature is to turn forwards, the likes of (Mesut) Ozil, (Santi) Cazorla, (Tomas) Rosicky, Ramsey - they all like to attack, but in the big games maybe they focus also on defending well so we can improve.

"The more a team progresses, it raises the expectation level, and the players have to live with that.

"But all the teams have to do that, and it is interesting as well because in some way it pushes the team to raise their level, and we do have the quality to do it."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

Y

ou can't blame De Gea for wanting to leave, he has enough to do in front of goal as it is as well as taking on the role of Man Utd's version of Derek Acorah in trying to contact and organise a defence that isn't there.

rodger's gusset
Van Gaal downbeat on De Gea

I

f you want to take six points off Arsenal, then that's a great strike force. Can't imagine either of them showing much for the rest of the season though...

foot in mouth
Adebayor & Berbatov: You Have To Admire The Balls

L

ooks like Real get their man, most likely at their own valuation, yet again. Resistance is futile.

paul7702
Van Gaal downbeat on De Gea

Footer 365

Leicester agree club-record fee for Charles Aranguiz

Leicester are discussing terms with Chile midfielder Charles Aranguiz after agreeing a club-record £10.5m fee with Internacional.

Andre Pirlo backs Liverpool's Mario Balotelli to prove his potential

Andrea Pirlo thinks Mario Balotelli can still be one of the "top forwards in Europe" despite his struggles at Liverpool.

Liverpool beat HJK, Villa draw at Forest and Leeds see off Everton

Liverpool beat HJK, Aston Villa drew 3-3 at Nottingham Forest, while Leeds beat Everton 2-0 and Newcastle lost at home on Saturday.

Mail Box

Neville Has It Wrong On Chelsea...

One Mailboxer says that the Neviller has it slightly wrong on Chelsea. Plus thoughts on sexy Saints, pre-season reviews, Connor Wickham and televised analysis...

De Gea Disrespectful? Remember RVP...

We got dozens of mails from people pointing and laughing at Brian D for suggesting David de Gea has acted disrespectfully; we printed some. And there's more...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company