Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 17 April 2014

Gunners inspired by Bayern win - Bould

Steve Bould has noticed an improvement at Arsenal in recent weeks

Arsenal assistant coach Steve Bould insists defeating Bayern Munich last month has given the Gunners the self-belief to step up their push for a top-four finish in the Barclays Premier League.

Since dispatching Bayern 2-0 at the Allianz Arena the Gunners have swept aside Swansea and Reading to lift them within two points of the Champions League places.

"The big thing for us was getting the big result at Bayern," said assistant coach Steve Bould - filling in for Arsene Wenger who has lost his voice. "We're only the second team to have won there this season so it's given everybody a belief that we're doing all right. It was an important game for us."

The triumph against Bayern was a marvellous response to the 2-1 defeat at Tottenham 10 days earlier, a result that appeared to have struck a mortal blow to Arsenal's hopes of finishing in the top four.

"I'm hoping that (the loss to Tottenham) is the big turning point. We played really well on the day and I think we absolutely deserved more than we got," Bould said.

"Two defensive errors and we got punished by good players and that's what happens. Everybody has realised that clean sheets win games a lot of the time. We've improved."

Jack Wilshere and Theo Walcott may feature against Norwich a week on Saturday after making encouraging progress in their rehabilitation.

Wilshere, who only returned from a 17-month injury-enforced lay-off in October, has been out since the 2-1 defeat by Tottenham on March 3 because of an ankle problem.

Walcott has been sidelined since incurring a hip/thigh injury while on England duty in the build up to last month's World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro. The pair will miss Saturday's trip to West Brom, but Bould revealed they could be back in action a week later.

"We have good news with both of them. Jack and Theo are outside running and have an outside chance of being involved against Norwich a week on Saturday," Bould told the club's official website.

Latest Sport News

Stats Centre