Fabregas challenges Gunners to respond

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Football News

Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas has challenged his team-mates to prove they are good enough to turn around their recent slump when they face Manchester United at the weekend.

The Gunners were held to a goalless draw against Fenerbahce in the Champions League on Wednesday night, meaning they have gone three games without a victory.

"We have to keep going," Fabregas said. "The next match, against Manchester United, is massive. This is welcomed because it's a big game and big players want to play in big games."

He added: "We don't want excuses because we are playing for Arsenal and a lot of players would like to be in our position. We have to make sure we give everything on the pitch always."

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger accused referees and opponents of victimising his side following the stalemate with Fenerbahce.

After criticising Stoke for deliberately harming his players at the weekend, Mikael Silvestre is a fresh injury concern after his nose was injured in a challenge involving Semih Senturk.

Wenger said: "Was it intentional? I don't know. He rotated his arm. You must ask the player."

Goalkeeper Manuel Almunia missed the Group G clash with an upset stomach, while Bacary Sagna, Theo Walcott and Emmanuel Adebayor were also sidelined. Wenger is getting increasingly frustrated as he feels different rules apply to his team.

He said: "You can look at the fair play table. Who is top? Arsenal Football Club. We have no lessons to learn from anyone on that front. Look at the team that makes less fouls - it is Arsenal Football Club.

"Who gets the more yellow cards after four or five fouls? Arsenal Football Club. Some teams get their first yellow card after 15 fouls. I cannot read the (rule) book or something is wrong."

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

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Emmanuel Adebayor
Stoke City
Mikael Silvestre
Premier League
Manuel Almunia
Manchester United
Bacary Sagna
Theo Walcott

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