Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 20 August 2014

Wenger targets swift response

Arsene Wenger

Arsene Wenger will take Arsenal back to basics as he looks to plot Manchester City's downfall at the Emirates Stadium on Easter Sunday.

The Gunners saw their seven-match winning run in the Barclays Premier League brought to an unceremonious end with a 2-1 defeat at relegation battlers QPR on Saturday. Tottenham capitalised when they beat Swansea 3-1 at White Hart Lane, and they now trail Arsenal only on goal difference.

Wenger knows it will take a much-improved display to return to winning ways against City next weekend, and he said: "We have to take the distance and put things into perspective. We have to come back to basics, that means to win football games and win your fights first."

He added: "We have to play as well like we do. It is disappointing to lose a big run in the way that we did it.

"It (the City game) is a good opportunity to put things right again, of course.

"I believe we will see a different Arsenal on Sunday, but I can tell you as well that it will be needed.

"We know we have to win every single game and that is why it is so disappointing to lose."

The Gunners turned in a lacklustre display as QPR won individual battles across the pitch, taking the lead in the 22nd minute through Adel Taarabt as the Moroccan slipped marker Thomas Vermaelen on the edge of the penalty area before clipping home his first Premier League goal.

Although Theo Walcott drew the visitors level before the break, firing in after his low strike had cannoned back off the post, the expected second-half recovery failed to materialise.

After Robin van Persie was thwarted by a fine save from QPR goalkeeper Paddy Kenny when he raced clear, Hoops midfielder Samba Diakite crashed in what proved to be the winner after 65 minutes when he was set up by Jamie Mackie, who jumped over Vermaelen as the unfortunate Belgian slipped on the edge of the area.

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