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Wenger hails mental strength

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger praised the mental toughness of his side after they responded to criticism with an emphatic Premier League win over struggling Reading.

Last Updated: 18/12/12 at 08:21 Post Comment

Arsene Wenger: Saw Arsenal respond with victory at Reading

Arsene Wenger: Saw Arsenal respond with victory at Reading

The Gunners ran out 5-2 victors at the Madejski Stadium on Tuesday night, with hat-trick hero Santi Cazorla the star of the show in a rampant Arsenal performance.

Lukas Podolski and Theo Walcott also struck for Wenger's side, who moved to within two points of the top four with the win.

Wenger felt talk of a crisis at the North London club, escalated by the Capital One Cup defeat at Bradford and reported rifts with assistant manager Steve Bould, was put to bed at the expense of bottom side Reading.

"Success came with the quality of our game. We focused on the quality of our game and played," he said.

"Our ambition is to finish as high as we can and win our next game, that is all we can do. We have to focus on the quality of our football."

When pressed on the recent harsh criticism of Arsenal, Wenger added: "It depends on what you mean by a crisis. If you call being slaughtered by everybody then we were in a super-crisis.

"In our job you need to be mentally strong. It is a test when you have been in a position like we were in."

Walcott

Walcott, who is still yet to sign a new deal with Arsenal, was deployed in his favoured central role and Wenger is hopeful an agreement can be reached sooner rather than later.

The Frenchman said: "It is not my decision, it is Theo's decision as well - if it is [only] my decision, it is quickly done.

"Theo has been educated at Southampton and Arsenal, where he has become a top-level player.

"I hope that when he considers his future he will think this is the best place for him and sign for us.

"I will just say our desire and will is clear, and Theo knows that. Hopefully we can get to a happy end with it."

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A

nd we always will love Ozil. I don't really mind if no other team can see just how brilliant he is, or if people think he is rubbish, because we know he is far from it. He is a fantastic player, and if people cannot see that it can only be a good thing, in that he will be at Arsenal for years to come, pulling the strings from behind a glass veil.

ganachus
F365's Top Ten Unheralded Players Of The Season

I

like the list and Ozil in particular does seem under appreciated when you look at his stats (an odd thing considering his fee or maybe because of it). Palace have a few and I've always thought Dwight Gayle at Palace was under rated, certainly when you look at his goals per game ratio. You can probably also add Ryan Bertrand at Saints who should be in the England team in my view.

sensiblepoolfan
F365's Top Ten Unheralded Players Of The Season

N

ew Shaun Wright Phillips, there I've said it. If any club offers stupid money we'd be stupid to say no, he's not a potential worldie by any stretch and I feel that after a few years warming the bench at city or Chelsea he'll be back at QPR smoking sheesha pipes under Harry Redknapp.

uncle monty
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