TOMAS ROSICKY has warned the rest of Europe there is more to come from both him and Arsenal this season.
Now fit again following a string of injury setbacks, the Czech winger made his first start since January 2008 in Wednesday night’s Champions League Group H opener away to Standard Liege, where the Gunners fought back from going 2-0 down inside five minutes to win with a late strike from Eduardo.
While there may have been a touch of good fortune about Thomas Vermaelen’s scrappy second-half equaliser, when Alex Song looked offside and used a hand as he knocked the ball back into the six-yard box, Rosicky believes the manner of the turnaround will have sent a message this young Arsenal side are in it for the long-haul.
“You have to believe in the style we are playing, we did that,” said Rosicky. “It is really satisfying when you can turn a match around like this.
“If you do not believe, you cannot turn a game like this.
“You just have to continue to pass the ball like we always do.
“We know that inside we are strong enough to turn games like this, and that is what we proved in Liege.”
Rosicky added: “We knew that after the two defeats in Manchester, we needed a result. The performance in Liege will help with the confidence.”
Czech midfielder Rosicky has endured a frustrating 18 months on the sidelines.
However he is now “fired up” to have an impact.
“I am not anywhere near my best, and still have plenty of room to improve. I will get better,” he said.
“I am fired up to win a trophy and enjoying being back. It is good that I can be part of this team back again.’’
Rosicky, though, admits it was a tough rehabilitation.
“Of course it is difficult when you are out for such a long time, but when you play, you just have to try to forget that,” he said.
“I am just enjoying being back, I am fit and am itching to play football again, but I have to take things step by step.”
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger feels the victory will have “strengthened the belief” within the Arsenal camp following what has been a difficult few weeks, in the wake of successive domestic defeats and Eduardo’s European ban for diving which was overturned on appeal.
There is little respite for the Gunners, though, as Wigan visit Emirates Stadium tomorrow.
Wenger confirmed Robin van Persie, who missed the trip to Belgium through injury, was in line for a return to action on Saturday.
Although midfielder Andrei Arshavin has a “10% chance” of featuring against the Latics, having aggravated a groin problem during the international break, goalkeeper Manuel Almunia, who like Van Persie missed the clash at Liege, continues to be troubled by a chest infection.
“Robin van Persie is the most likely to come back (for Saturday),” Wenger said.
“But Denilson looks to be out for a few weeks with a back problem.”
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