Arsenal star Santi Cazorla believes that the real secret to his side's tremendous run of form over the last three months is a new-found commitment to defending responsibly as a team, rather than much-lauded attacking qualities.
Cazorla has been one of the driving forces behind Arsenal's run of 15 wins in their last 17 matches, playing with maturity in a deeper central midfield position.
The Spanish schemer has insisted that Saturday's 4-1 win over Liverpool was a prime example of Arsenal turning the corner when it comes to keeping top teams quiet, every bit as much as a devastating spell of three goals in eight minutes that effectively put the match to bed before half-time.
Santi's got the key, got the secret
In an interview with Arsenal's official club website following a seventh win on the spin Cazorla shared what he thought was the key to making sure Raheem Sterling and co. didn't do damage in the final third.
Cazorla said: “Liverpool have very good players with Raheem Sterling, Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho but the team played very compact and played together, which is very important for us. When we defend together, we always win.
Confidence has never been higher in North London
“The confidence is high for everyone and we need to play the same now we have a week of rest, and then we need to prepare for the next game."
Arsenal have certainly stepped things up a gear in recent weeks, finally getting the nucleus of their star-studded squad fit and on form at the business end of the campaign.
A spring charge featuring nine home wins in a row might have come too late to stop Chelsea winning their first title in five years, but there's every reason for Gunners fans to be hugely positive about Arsene Wenger's plans moving forward.
Cazorla, Mesut Ozil and Olivier Giroud have all shown what they're capable of against big teams in massive matches, now the minimum aim for this season has to be second place and FA Cup success.
Arsenal fans, have you noticed a significant defensive improvement since that 2-0 win at the Etihad in January? Does Cazorla deserve more credit for his performances this season? If so, let us know in the comment box below!
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