Per Mertesacker wants Arsenal to put their UEFA Champions League success behind them when they face West Brom in the Premier League.
Arsene Wenger’s side have made a slow start to the 2014-15 domestic campaign, with just four wins from their opening 12 league outings.
Last season’s FA Cup winners came under heavy criticism for wasting a host of first-half chances in the 2-1 home defeat to Manchester United last weekend, but there was more positive news on Wednesday with a 2-0 victory over Borussia Dortmund. That win secured their progress into the Champions League knockout stages with a game to spare, but Mertesacker knows the London club must now focus their attentions on addressing their league form, starting with Saturday’s trip to The Hawthorns. “We were very convincing [against Dortmund],” he said. “We have to show character and that is what makes me really happy for the next few games, because we have to sharpen up in the Premier League as well. “Saturday is a good chance to show everyone that we are still alive.
We have secured Champions League [last-16] football and that gives us a life, but that has nothing to do with the Premier League. “We have to come back in the League and that is the next target.”
Arsenal have been hindered by a lengthy injury list this season, a problem highlighted by Jack Wilshere’s latest setback, with the midfielder set for three months out after undergoing ankle surgery. Mikel Arteta and Yaya Sanogo went off injured on Wednesday, with Wenger expecting the Spaniard to be out “for a while” with a calf problem, while the French striker – who scored his first goal for the club against Dortmund – has a hamstring problem.
Theo Walcott (groin), Danny Welbeck (knee) and Wojciech Szczesny (hip) all missed the midweek clash and remain fitness concerns.
SOURCE: Daily Monitor