Wenger wants consistency

Gunners boss and Mertesacker full of praise for Koscielny

Wenger: 'Draw gives us confidence for title challenge'

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Arsene Wenger remains optimistic over Arsenal's chances of winning the Premier League in the wake of Sunday's draw at Manchester City.

After earning a point at the Etihad Stadium, the Gunners, who had been widely written off in pre-season following the sales of Robin van Persie and Alex Song, sit fifth in the table.

They are full of confidence having yet to suffer defeat in five games and will take extra self-belief from a game in which they dominated City for long periods.

And although he knows it is too early to make sweeping judgements, Wenger thinks a first league title since 2004 is a possibility.

"We are a bit frustrated because we feel we had the chances early on and late in the game. But you can see that we are a team and we are a strong team"

Per Mertesacker

Quotes of the week

"It's down to consistency and what happened today should strengthen our belief," the manager told Sky Sports 1HD.

Improvement

"But we are not the perfect team yet and there is still room for improvement. I believe we have a chance."

Laurent Koscielny earned Arsenal the point, which was the least they deserved, after cancelling out Joleon Lescott's opener.

The centre-back, deputising for the ill Thomas Vermaelen, had an excellent game and Wenger was full of praise for the Frenchman.

He said: "I'm not worried about Koscielny - he is top class. We have three top-class central defenders. We were in danger a few times on the counter-attack but overall we were solid.

"We are a bit frustrated because we feel we had the chances early on and late in the game. But you can see that we are a team and we are a strong team.

Strong

"Manchester City score a lot from set-pieces and they did it again today."

Per Mertesacker, who partnered Koscielny at the centre of defence, was also delighted with his team-mate.

The German said: "We had to be strong today, it was a very difficult match for us. We have a great squad this year and a lot of great centre-backs at the moment.

"Thomas is at home a little bit ill and Laurent came in and did fantastically. It was a solution.

"We are a strong squad and we have to stick together. We did well today and we have to keep on going."