Laurent Koscielny explains what Arsenal have changed since losing to Liverpool

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Not for the first time, Arsene Wenger was written off by all of his most vocal critics in the aftermath of the 4-0 defeat to Liverpool at the end of August.

Such was the manner of the humiliation at Anfield, the Gunners weren't just being written out of the title race but there were serious concerns they would struggle to make the top four for the second season running.

However, since then Wenger's men have started showing the kind of resolve that was so evidently lacking in August.

Three wins and a respectable draw at Stamford Bridge have turned things back in the Arsenal boss' favour and confidence is gradually building again at the Emirates.

On Monday night, they face a stern test in the form of West Brom and Wenger will be all-too-aware how quickly that current optimism will disappear with a bad result against Tony Pulis' side.

So just how has the Gunners manager been able to inspire a revival in form?

According to Laurent Koscielny, it is by sorting out the kind of basic skills which are almost a minimum requirement for any team to be successful.

The French defender admitted 'a lot of things' were changed after the catastrophic result at Anfield but stressed it was a mentality issue that got them in the mess in the first place.

Liverpool v Arsenal - Premier League

"Against Liverpool we didn’t play," Koscielny told the Arsenal official website.

“We didn’t run for our team-mates, we didn’t give a solution for our team-mates and so we had a lot of things that we didn’t do.

“We had to respond well after the international break and I think we did, because all of the players were focused on our jobs.

“The first one is the defensive job and I think everyone did it. When everyone runs on the pitch it’s then easier after to attack and we have the quality up front to score goals, but we need to push ourselves more to have the results we want.

Chelsea v Arsenal - Premier League

“We feel stronger [now]. Physically we are better and we can see during the games, we run more, we can help our team-mates more on defensive jobs and we are more focused.

“After the defeat at Liverpool, we changed a lot of things and we could see that against Bournemouth and at Chelsea too. I think we need to keep this for the other games we’ll have because if we keep the same mentality, we can have some good results.”

Sounds simple enough right? 'Run further and we're more likely to win'.

One man consistently criticised for his poor work rate - never more so than during the Liverpool defeat - is Mesut Ozil. Perhaps it's not a coincidence the German has missed Arsenal's last three much-improved performances through injury then.


And if Ozil is indeed in contention to feature against West Brom, you can't help but wonder if Koscielny's comments are a not-so-subtle hint in the attacking midfielder's direction.

Nevertheless, it is probably worth keeping an eye on the returning Ozil's movement over the next few games to see if Koscielny's message gets through to him.

Arsene Wenger
Alexis Sanchez
Laurent Koscielny

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