Van Persie – Arteta and Sagna have made Arsenal strong at the back again

Robin van Persie has seen the massive Arsenal injury list greatly reduced over the last couple of weeks, and he is most pleased with the return of Mikel Arteta and Bacary Sagna as the reason why Arsenal comfortably kept a clean sheet against Bolton in midweek.

“I had a strong feeling during the game that Bolton would not score,” Van Persie said. “Our spine looked firm and that owed a lot to a couple of our returning players.

“Mikel Arteta made a real difference in terms of our solidity – he keeps the ball well, knows when to tackle and how to kill a counter-attack, showing his experience and demonstrating that he is a massive player for us.

“Bac’s return was a huge boost for us too. I didn’t know he was going to start, but he looked so fit and strong throughout the game. He’s been out for four months but came back in with only a few minutes’ football behind him and played unbelievably – and, I can tell you from my own experience, that’s really difficult to do.

“He was rock solid at the back and good going forward, so it’s great for all of us. He’s a good friend and an amazing player, and we’re all really happy to see him back.”

And so are the Arsenal fans glad to see him back. Sagna was given a massive standing ovation from the stands when he first returned to the side and it is great relief for the Gunners to have a real full-back in the team for a change.