Arsenal: Wenger pleased by 'serious' performance; star linked with Manchester City move; Xhaka Celebration
Arsene Wenger praised his side for remaining serious throughout, as they vanquished 10-man Hull City 4-1 at the KCOM Stadium yesterday.
Alex Iwobi opened the scoring with a deflected effort before former Spurs player Jake Livermore was sent off after ‘saving’ Francis Coquelin’s shot with his hand.
That incident made it a comfortable afternoon for the Gunners, with Theo Walcott, Alexis Sanchez and Granit Xhaka among the goals in the second half.
Wenger said: “When you play 11 against 10, it is, of course, not the same mentally and psychologically.
“But we remained serious and in the end we won the game in a convincing way, I would say overall.
“But we had a very difficult game against Southampton last week, then went away to Paris Saint-Germain. It’s an away game, so you are happy with the three points.”
Arsenal have now won three consecutive league games, added to away draws at champions Leicester City and PSG; a very decent response to their opening day defeat to Liverpool.
A major fork in the road is next Saturday’s London derby against Chelsea, which is now a massive game for both clubs after the Blues dropped points against Swansea and Liverpool.
Arsene Wenger’s side are well placed among the pack on 10 points, with Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City leading the way after a 100% start.
Worryingly for Gooners though, the Sunday Express are linking City with a January move for Alexis Sanchez.
The Chilean has two years remaining on his current deal at the Emirates, and Guardiola is interested in swooping for him should he opt not sign a new contract.
The pair worked together at Barcelona, and City certainly have the financial capacity to make the player an offer that will be hard to refuse.
Sanchez wants to wait and see if Arsenal are capable of competing for major honours this season; and that means a serious title challenge and progress in the Champions League.
Finally, there was some discussion in Arsenal circles yesterday about Xhaka’s celebration after his thumping long range strike capped of yesterday’s win at Hull.
The Swiss international raised a finger to his lips in a shushing gesture, with some suggesting the celebration was intended to send a message to Wenger.
The Frenchman has been reluctant to use Xhaka this season, citing a lack of sharpness and fitness after the summer’s European Championship.
Arsenal paid £34 million for Xhaka and Wenger has compared him to Emmanuel Petit in recent weeks, so there is no doubt that he rates him highly.
Featured image: All rights reserved by Emrah Partal
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