Arsene Wenger admits even he has been surprised by the speed and determination with which his Arsenal youngsters have marched back into the Barclays Premier League title race.
The Gunners found themselves a massive 11 points adrift of leaders Chelsea after last month's 3-0 defeat at home to Carlo Ancelotti's side, but moved back up to third on the back of Sunday's 2-1 win at Liverpool - six points behind the Blues and with a game in hand.
Wenger said: "We feel that we have sent out a message to all the people who wrote us off after we were beaten at home by Chelsea."
He added: "We have got ourselves back very close to the leaders - just six points away from Chelsea with a game in hand.
"We have come back at them in a very short space of time since they beat us in late November. Even I did not expect that to happen."
At the weekend Arsenal became the first side in six years to triumph at Anfield after going behind.
Wenger added: "The win at Liverpool is a very significant victory, but only if it is followed by good results now over the next few weeks.
"We have to go to Burnley now on Wednesday, a difficult game against a side very good at home, and then we have Hull at the Emirates on Saturday. We must maintain our current form in those games.
"We have shown that we have mental strength. For us, we are back into contention following the other results from Saturday.
"We knew beforehand that we had to take advantage of others dropping points. We are in a good position with a game in hand and mentally it was a massive game for us."
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