December 6 2013 Latest news:
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger praised his players for producing a performance of “patience and experience” as they registered a 2-1 win at Marseille in their Champions League Group F encounter.
Theo Walcott and Aaron Ramsey’s second-half strikes proved the difference at the Stade Velodrome, where the hosts dominated for large periods of the match.
Wenger felt his players were “timid” in the first half but came good after the break, rendering Jordan Ayew’s stoppage-time penalty irrelevant.
“It was important for us not to give the first goal away and I thought Marseille had an excellent first half,” Wenger told Sky Sports. “We were a bit timid overall and in the second half they dropped and we took advantage of our good moments in the game.
“It was a victory linked with patience and experience, even if we were not flamboyant tonight. But we start with three points and that is good.
“I knew that it would be a difficult game. Marseille is a good side, they can beat anybody here.”
Midfielder Ramsey, who has started the season in fine form, said the Gunners had made the best of difficult conditions in the south of France.
“We have a tough group. It was vital to get three points and get off to a good start here,” he said.
“It was a difficult night, the pitch was sticky and slow, we didn’t quite get the rhythm in our passing going. In the end I think we deserved it.”
Ramsey now has six goals this season - four of those in Europe - and he added: “I’m happy with the way I’m playing at the moment.
“I’m playing with confidence and I’m getting into positions and putting them away.”