Per Mertesacker: 'Arsenal need to train harder'

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker claims that his side is failing to reach its potential and should be 'training harder'.

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker has admitted that the Gunners are not playing as well as they should be of late, and need to "train harder".

Arsene Wenger's charges scraped past Anderlecht last night in the Champions League as two late goals secured a 2-1 away win.

Mertesacker is quoted by The Telegraph as saying: "We are not at our best. Football-wise we lack a few things. We have to be honest to ourselves and train harder.

"Everyone knows that it is a difficult start to the season for us and confidence is not how we want it. Again, it is away from home on Saturday and again I think we have to do better with our own possession, to put more pressure on [opponents], not to lose so many balls in the middle of the park, to play more in wide areas.

"I think it is better to expose them there, instead of playing one-twos through the middle. It doesn't work as much as last season, so we have to work on that. The passing game is not as efficient as last year."

Arsenal travel to Sunderland on Saturday.

Arsenal's English striker Danny Welbeck scores their second goal past Hull City's English defender Curtis Davies and Hull City's Egyptian midfielder Ahmed Elmohamady during their English Premier League football match against Hull City at the Emirates Stad
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
3Liverpool23138254282647
4Chelsea23145441162547
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal23116641301139
7Burnley239771920-134
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9Everton2376102538-1327
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16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2358101729-1223
17Southampton2349102334-1121
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom23310101830-1219
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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