Walcott Wants Away Form Replicated At Emirates
Theo Walcott has hailed Arsenal’s tremendous away form and urged his teammates to replicate the same kind of quality at the Emirates Stadium too.
After Wednesday’s 2-1 win over Marseille in France, the Gunners have now won ten consecutive games on their travels, which is a club record. Walcott is thrilled by such fantastic run of results and believes the club’s eight-year-long trophy drought could end this season if they remain consistent and become a dominant force in their own backyard too.
He said: “We’ve got players who are playing fantastically well. There is so much belief in this team at the moment and I think it’s showing. We just need to push on and make sure we get that home form going now; the away form is absolutely fantastic. We’ve got to stay fit, which is crucial – we don’t want to lose any more players. But as soon as the players come back there is going to be more competition for places and that’s only going to be a good thing for Arsenal. I think we’ll push on and we can definitely challenge [for trophies] this year, for sure.
“Someone told me in the dressing room it’s 10 successive wins away from home – it’s a record. To be part of a team that has done that, in the amount of years that Arsenal have existed, is a great honour and a great achievement for everyone. It just shows how talented these players are.”
Midfielder Aaron Ramsey has played a major part in the six-game winning run (overall) Arsenal are on currently, and Walcott made sure to praise the Welshman for raising his game by several notches this season.
He continued: “It always takes time when you have injuries and [Aaron] had one of the worst injuries in football. He’s worked really hard and it’s definitely paying off now. He’s enjoying his football, he loves touching the ball and he’s got something different to his game now which is goals. People would criticise that side [in the past] but I see him in training every day and he’s looking a totally different player. He’s like a new signing. It’s an absolute honour to play with him at the moment.”
Conte Is Arsenal’s Choice As Wenger’s Successor – Report
Arsenal FC would move to install Juventus boss Antonio Conte as Arsene Wenger’s successor at the Emirates Stadium if the incumbent decides against extending his deal, which expires at the end of this season. (The Daily Star)
Wenger recently revealed that he isn’t in a hurry to extend his stay and would like to evaluate his team’s performance after this season before taking any decision regarding his Arsenal future. In case he decides to head for the exit after 17 years at the helm, the Gunners board’s top priority would be to sign Conte as his replacement.
The source of this rumour is Italian publication Sports Media Net.
Ozil ‘Could Not Handle The Pressure Of Madrid’ – Perez
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has reopened his war of words with Arsenal newcomer Mesut Ozil. (Goal)
This time, the Los Blancos supremo has rejected media suggestions that the German playmaker was offloaded to finance the world record transfer of Gareth Bale. Instead, he claims that it was actually Ozil himself who bailed, as he was unable to handle the pressure that comes with playing at a big club like Real Madrid.
In an interview with Bernabeudigital.com, Perez said: “Ozil asked to leave the club and nobody here should be upset about it. He could not stand the pressure of Madrid.”
It is pertinent to mention here that Ozil joined Arsenal in a £42.5million deal on the transfer deadline day. Perez and Ozil have been quibbling in the press ever since.
Wilshere Wants Gunners to Finish As Group F Leaders
Jack Wilshere believes the results on Matchday 1 of the UEFA Champions League have made Group F very open, and instead of just targeting qualification to the next round, they should now be trying to finish as the group leaders.
The Gunners have three points already and sit atop after beating Marseille 2-1 in France on Wednesday. On the same night, the group favourites Borussia Dortmund suffered a surprise loss away to Napoli. The Germans’ task of nailing the top spot just got a a bit difficult, and Wilshere feels the Gunners can use it to their advantage if they remain consistent and keep up their current level of play.
The Evening Standard have quoted the England international as saying: “Dortmund losing does open it up a bit. We have got two home games now [against Napoli and Dortmund] and they are tough teams but if we play to our full potential in front of our fans, we should be able to win those games. If we win them both, we are sitting on nine points going into the last three games and that is a good position to be in.
“We also have Dortmund and Napoli away and away games are always tough but we want to finish top of the group. In the first game, if you can’t win it you make sure you don’t lose it but we won so it is a great start.We know it is only a great start because it is a tough group – Napoli beat Dortmund so any team can beat any other in this group so we have to be ready for the next.”
About his own team’s amazing run of form that has seen them win 10 consecutive away games and six overall, Wilshere added: “At the end of last season we knew we had to get that fourth position and I said at the start of the campaign we had to take that into this year. We started off badly losing at home [to Aston Villa] but we picked it up since. We won at Fulham away, which is not easy, and we have had some good away wins. The last 10 away games we have won but they have not been easy.
“Some games we had to hold out right until the end and in other games we have killed it off early. We are on a good run at the moment but we know we have got to keep that going.”