Gunners ace: “We have to fight”

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker

Per Mertesacker feels Arsenal must quickly regain the strength they had before the international break after two shock defeats in a row.

It has been suggested that the break to allow for international matches has adversely affected the players. The Gunners had been doing well before the break, including securing a draw with champions from last season, Manchester City and a 3-1 win at West Ham.

However, after returning from the break for international matches, Arsenal have had two shock losses, in the Premier League to Norwich and in Tuesday night’s Champions League clash with Schalke, where they went down 2-0, with the German side replacing them at the top of their Champions League group.

In many quarters, the Gunners have been criticised for seeming to be ‘asleep’ in the two performances. Talking to Arsenal’s official website, defender Mertesacker said how Arsenal need to come back from the defeats and become strong again.

“We have had a difficult week. The results are kind of an accident, now we have to find our game again. The international break was kind of a killer for us. We have to find our strength again quickly. We have the potential in us, but first we have to fight,” he said.

Mertesacker feels the Gunners must now learn from the defeats and get back their self-confidence.

“We have to learn quickly from what happened [at Norwich last weekend] and against Schalke. If we do not find these solutions, it’s going to be difficult in the Premier League and the Champions League.

“It is our task now to find our self-confidence, we have great players with great potential. So it will be good to have a game in three days so we can show our potential again. We will try to be positive before the next game.

“In our training sessions, we will look to get our confidence back. Sometimes you need one game to find your strength and quality so let’s do it on Saturday.”

Steve Bould, the assistant coach, expressed after Tuesday’s game how the players were lacking confidence, but the club’s fans will be hoping they can reverse this slump against QPR this weekend.

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