Per Mertesacker believes Arsenal now have the ability to win matches with different styles of play, but insists they have yet to prove their title credentials.
Boss Arsene Wenger claimed Monday’s 2-1 win over Man City will “strengthen belief” that Arsenal can go and win their first league title since 2004, but Mertesacker knows that nothing can be taken for granted at this stage.
“We haven’t proved anything yet and we haven’t been that consistent that we can talk about that – that is my opinion,” said Mertesacker.
“We go game by game and concentrate on having a game plan and trying to implement it. That has been our strength so far against the big team and it makes us stronger as a unit.
“We face the next challenge on Saturday (against Southampton).
“It is obviously a very busy time but we haven’t shown some strength and the depth of the squad is vital at the minute.”
The Gunners moved to within two points of the Premier League summit after first-half goals from Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud sunk City.
Much like last season’s 2-0 victory at City and an important Champions League win over Bayern Munich in October, the success on Monday was based on a professional, controlled and measured approach.
And Mertesacker feels those kinds of performances, as well as free-flowing attacking displays such as the 3-0 win over Manchester United, show that Arsenal are now developing into a team that is mature enough to secure points in a manner of ways.
“We are capable of doing different things sometimes and that is what makes it harder for the opponent,” he said.
“That is our thought and that is why we implement them into games sometimes, but we are still dangerous on the counter attack and that makes us a real threat.
“Last season we played at City and we showed some different kind of match-plan.
“That is what we had in the locker already, but this year we are more consistent and it is what makes us a bit better as a unit.
“Sometimes we need to adjust, we don’t have all the players available at the minute, we think that is best way to win against City but we need to trust that way as well – it is not only thinking about it, it is also about putting it in to practice.
“That is what we are doing really well at the minute but that means a lot of concentration and work in training and everyone in the game is up for the challenge.”