Wenger: We suffered for the win

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Arsene Wenger says he was pleased with Arsenal’s resilience as they secured an important three points with a 3-2 win over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

After Andros Townsend cancelled out Shkodran Mustafi’s first half opener, Alexis Sanchez came to the fore with a killer brace. A late header by James Tomkins rattled the nerves of the Gunners but they held out to close the gap on the top four to one point.

Here’s what Arsene Wenger had to say about the performance when quizzed by Sky Sports.

On the win…

Overall it was in a convincing way, even though in the second half it was more difficult. In the first half, we couldn’t take advantage of the chances we created. In the second half we were challenged because they came back to 1-1 but we found the resources to score two great goals. From then on, they never gave up. When you looked at their [Palace’s] results they make many results in the final ten minutes since the start of the season. That’s why we were a bit on edge at the end.

On the points meaning more after a tight game…

You want to win the game, no matter how much you suffer in the end. We did that and that was important tonight.

On whether he’s changed his mind about preferring a back four…

No, I say we are adaptable as we play both systems. In some games we play three, in most games we’ll play four.

On whether he’s fearful of losing Alexis Sanchez in January…

No, I’m not fearful. As you said, that will be a subject that comes up because of his contractual situation. I’ve said that [I’d like to keep him] many times since the start of the season. I can only repeat what I’ve said until now.

On Arsenal’s players not celebrating with Sanchez…

No, I didn’t see that.

On Wilshere coming back to his best…

He has shown that recently and he’s shown that again tonight. He’s played a very good game, he gave the ball to Sanchez to score as well. Overall, he was very good tonight, yes.

On Arsenal regaining their composure after stuttering in the second half…

Yes, we kept our composure. It’s a difficult game for everybody in the league, to go home with the three points you need to suffer a little bit…that’s for sure and that’s what we did. For the biggest part of the game I felt we played well.

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