Belfast Telegraph

We're getting stronger - Gibbs

Left-back Kieran Gibbs has urged Arsenal to maintain the momentum they have built up in recent weeks as the Barclays Premier League season reaches its climax.

The Gunners can focus all their attention on the league over the next two months, having been knocked out of the Champions League in midweek despite a gallant effort to overturn their 4-0 first-leg deficit against AC Milan.

Manager Arsene Wenger has lost a number of players for lengthy periods this term, and Gibbs told "I think you have to give credit to the players who played while the others were out. People don't realise that we basically had half a squad at one stage and the team was just down to its bare bones."

He added: "But obviously now we have a bigger squad, we can rotate more, players won't be as tired and the team looks a lot stronger. You can obviously see the benefits from that.

"Everybody has come together now and we have overcome a difficult period. We need to be consistent like this now for the rest of the season."

Arsenal have found some domestic form since their Champions League humbling at the San Siro, which was swiftly followed by exit from the FA Cup at Sunderland.

However, despite morale-boosting wins over Tottenham and Liverpool, there remains little margin for error.

Indeed, the Gunners could be back down to fifth in the table should Chelsea beat Stoke on Saturday, while third-placed Spurs could extend their current four-point cushion with a positive result at Everton ahead of Arsenal's Monday night clash against Newcastle.

Like Gibbs, Wenger is upbeat about his team's prospects for the run-in and reckons few sides can cope with the Gunners at their best - as Milan found out in Arsenal's 3-0 second-leg victory at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday.

"We can play at a pace that, at the moment, maybe nobody else can sustain," the Frenchman told Arsenal Player. "When we are on our roles, that is good for the morale of the team. If you look at the times we have reversed games; Villa, Tottenham, Liverpool, Sunderland and now Milan, you would say there is something special in there."


From Belfast Telegraph