Wenger: We're still in the race

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Arsene Wenger rejects claims the Barclays Premier League title is beyond Arsenal this season.

Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand reckons the Gunners have left themselves with too much work to do after a 1-1 draw at Middlesbrough mean they now lie eight points behind leaders Liverpool.

However, Wenger's insists with half of the Premier League matches still to be played in 2009, his young side still have plenty left to play for. "The team is improving, and if you look at the Middlesbrough game, we did have chances to score as well as being more stable defensively," Wenger told the club's official website.

He added: "I am confident we will come back and catch some ground before Christmas and then push on.

"I believe this team is not far off and can get there as much as the team in 2004.

"That is the question we want to answer in the next month, to not only show that we have potential, but that we can respond to the expectation level of our fans.

"At the moment, we swim a bit against the stream because we do not feel that (outside) around the team has the same belief as we do inside.

"We can understand that and take in on board because we lost some games which we should not have lost.

"But we have a few months in front of us now to show we were right to believe in our strengths and that we can be compared to the teams of such a quality in 2004 and maybe even aim to be stronger."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2008, All Rights Reserved.

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Premier League
Manchester United
Rio Ferdinand

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