Arsenal FC manager Arsene Wenger highlights Everton’s threat, urges his side to maintain consistency ahead of an important week and confirms Sagna’s absence.
League leaders Arsenal host Everton in their next Premier League encounter on Sunday and it promises to be an exciting game of football. Both teams have performed exceedingly well this season and proved a lot of doubters wrong. Everton are currently fifth in the league table – just seven points behind Arsenal. They are coming into this game on the back of a memorable win at Old Trafford as Bryan Oviedo popped up with a late winner. Everton have now beaten both Chelsea and Manchester United and will look for another big result at the Emirates.
Arsenal are now heading into a tough part of their fixture list and will face Everton, Napoli, Chelsea and Manchester City in their next four fixtures in all competition. This will be a big test for Arsene Wenger’s men and if they are able to come out of this period with some good results, it will add further substance to their title credentials. The Gunners cruised to a comfortable win over Hull City in their last game as Bendtner and Ozil got on the score sheet for the home side.
Arsene Wenger is well aware of the threat Everton possess and have praised their performances so far. He also acknowledged the important run of games that his side will face now, but believes that this is the time for the team to show their ‘quality’ and ‘hunger’.
“He has done remarkably well because they have had some difficult games. They have played many of the big teams in the league and overall are in a very strong position.
“They have just come out of a win against Manchester United. We are lucky this season a little bit, because there is always a big warning before we play against these teams when they have exceptional results. That keeps us on our toes. We know it is a big game.
“I don’t think there is a danger [of becoming complacent] because we are hungry, we want to win, and we have just put a few results together that will make us more ambitious, but as well conscious that in every single game you need to put a top-level performance in.
“It is a continuity as well because since the beginning of 2013 we have been quite consistent in our results, but now we have a big week in front of us starting with Everton and we have to show we have the hunger and the quality to do it.” – The Arsenal manager said.
Wenger also confirmed that German international Lukas Podolski is back in training, but will take some time to regain match fitness. He also revealed the unavailability of Bacary Sagna, who also missed the midweek clash.
“Apart from Podolski being back in training, everybody else is available from Wednesday night. We had no injuries and the players who were available then will be available for Everton.
“He’s been out for a long time and is still a bit short of match fitness because he had his first training session today [Friday]. But it’s good news to have him back.
“Bacary Sagna is short so he will not be in contention.” – Wenger added.