Wojciech Szczesny has given an insight into the work done by the Arsenal back four on the training ground and claimed that improvements are slowly being made thanks to the contribution of new boy Per Mertesacker.
Looking ahead to the North London derby the Polish international, who has somehow earned plaudits for his goalkeeping despite conceding 14 goals already, first touched on the momentum being built at the Emirates after three successive wins in ten days.
“We know we had a poor start to the season and it take time to get the confidence back,” he told Arsenal Player. “We’ve managed to win three games, the last two in particular were really tough and we got good results. We’re confident going into the game at White Hart Lane.”
With injuries and new acquisitions forcing Arsene Wenger to constantly reshuffle his back line, criticism has been levelled at his side’s perceived lack of organisation with many calling on the club to appoint a defensive coach. Despite the obvious problems, Szczesny believes that time together will help iron out erroneous decision making inside the box.
“It takes time for new players to get used to playing with each other. I think game-by-game you can see the team getting better, you can see the defence getting better. We understand each other, we communicate better. I can only hope it gets better as time goes on, but at the moment I can see a lot of positives.
“We separate almost every session. We separate the strikers from the defenders and I do my stuff with the back four and Pat Rice helps us to organise everything. It seems to be working because as I said before you can see the team is better organised and we understand each other.
“Whoever I play with I try to talk to them the same way. I try to approach the game the same way and it seems to be working.”
One new face who is becoming an increasingly important figure is Per Mertesacker. The German international has been immediately thrust into action since his arrival from Werder Bremen, with injuries to Thomas Vermaelen, Sebastian Squillaci, Laurent Koscielny and Johan Djourou, forcing him to get used to new partners in defence on a daily basis.
Praising the 26-year-old German international, Szczesny continued: “He’s a very confident and very experienced player. You can see he is a leader on the pitch and a good lad off it as well.
“He’s the kind of player we needed I think. He’s very strong and very tall; strikers don’t like to play against that kind of defender. He’s made a big impact. I can see him growing bigger (not literally surely?) and getting better as time goes on.”