Crystal Palace 1 Arsenal 2: Arsene Wenger happy with ‘real football’

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says his Gunners side played 'real Premier League football' at Selhurst Park

Arsene Wenger said his Arsenal side played “real Premier League football” after a 2-1 victory over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Sunday.

The north London side made the breakthrough in the first half after Mesut Ozil teed up Gunners striker Olivier Giroud to finish past Alex McCarthy.

Last week we had a bit of a stroll and thought we would win the game. Today we played real Premier League football from the first minute to the last

Arsene Wenger

Palace defender Joel Ward equalised before half-time, but Damien Delaney deflected Alexis Sanchez’s header past his own goalkeeper to hand victory to Arsenal.

And Wenger, whose side lost 2-0 against West Ham United at Emirates Stadium last weekend, was pleased with the FA Cup holders’s more energetic performance.

“I’m very pleased with the three points. If we had gone two games and zero points it would be absolutely difficult and we knew this would be a tricky one,” Wenger told BBC Sport.

“Last week we had a bit of a stroll and thought we would win the game. Today we played real Premier League football from the first minute to the last.

“With the ambitions we have made you have to have full commitment and we had that today.”

The Gunners manager withdrew Francis Coquelin in the second half after the midfielder walked a disciplinary tightrope following a first-half yellow card.

And Wenger explained the thought process behind his decision to replace the young French midfielder with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Wenger added: “I felt it wasn’t fortunate. I would like to see that again but in the end the pressure created by the crowd meant I took him off.

“When you are 2-1 up and he is playing quite well that’s difficult. It’s a sensitive decision.”

Arsenal move up to 11th place in the Premier League table following their narrow win against Crystal Palace.

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