Arsene Wenger praised Joel Campbell, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Hector Bellerin and Alex Iwobi on his first start after Arsenal’s 3-1 FA Cup win over Sunderland.
The Gunners had to come from behind to secure their place in Monday’s fourth round draw.
The Arsenal boss reacted to the win, as reported by the club’s official website, by saying that his team grew into the game and took control eventually in the second half on the road to fighting for a third successive win of the competition.
When you play a Premier League team you are always going to have to work. In the first half we went one down and we had to find our way because we were sharp in midfield.
After that slowly in the second half we took over, played in their half and scored great goals and created many chances.
We have done it [win the trophy] twice. What I will say is we take this competition with a desire to do well in it and to try to win it. It is a long way in the cup and you need a long run.
Campbell, improving with every game he plays, was the stand out player against Sam Allardyce’s Sunderland, grabbing the equaliser. The Ox played 90 minutes in an unnatural, but not entirely new, central midfield berth whilst Iwobi started having come through the Hale End Academy.
He [Oxlade-Chamberlain] came on stronger as the game went on and in the second half he was strong. I must say he was stronger in the second half.
Joel Campbell was very good. Alex Iwobi was one of the guys who was very good in the first half, he tired a little bit in the second half.
I liked the timing of his passes. In the middle of the park that is a vital quality and that fact he plays forward and sees [things]. As a young boy he is not afraid to come on and that is not easy.
When asked if Bellerin is the best right back in the league, the Frenchman didn’t rule it out; instead putting his name firmly in the mix.
He became stronger and stronger. Sometimes I felt in the last 20 minutes, every time he went forward he created a chance on goal.
I don’t know. Of course [he is among the best]. Look at the defensive and offensive numbers. The fact that he is only 20 years old, there is a lot more to come from him.
There was also good news on the injury front.
I believe that the next step is to get Rosicky back, Welbeck back, Sanchez back, Wilshere back and maybe we will get one player in. Overall, I think we have no new injuries so I’m not worried. If we had the same number of injuries we would be a bit short.