Newcastle 0 Arsenal 1: We’re ready for a fight, declares Arsene Wenger
Newcastle 0 Arsenal 1: Arsene Wenger says battling win shows his side's desire to fight for the title
Arsene Wenger claimed that Arsenal’s battling victory at Newcastle underlined his side’s desire to fight for the title as the Gunners moved back to the top of the table.
After a goalless first half at St James’ Park, Olivier Giroud’s deft header from Theo Walcott’s free-kick broke the deadlock in the 65th minute.
The Magpies rallied after falling behind, however, and waves of attacks from the home side ensured a tense finale.
We certainly didn’t deserve to get beat but a mistake cost us at a set play
But the Gunners held firm to ensure they head into 2014 top of the Premier League and one point ahead of second-placed Manchester City.
“There was a big satisfaction [with the result] because we surprised many people and we want to go from there,” Wenger told BBC Sport.
“We played two away games and got six points against West Ham and Newcastle and as you can see the team is ready for a fight.
“Let’s keep fighting and trying to develop the team.”
Wenger added: “Mesut Ozil has a shoulder problem. I don’t think he will be available for Cardiff on Wednesday, maybe after that, we will see.”
Meanwhile, Newcastle boss Alan Pardew felt that his side were hard done by as they lost their first game in four outings.
“We certainly didn’t deserve to get beat but a mistake cost us at a set play, and we then had some moments at the end but we have come out with our confidence renewed even though we have lost,” said Pardew.