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Arsene Wenger on Arsenal aims: This is the immediate plan

Arsene Wenger on Arsenal aims: This is the immediate plan

Arsenal have picked up just seven points from their past eight league fixtures and have dropped to seventh in the table.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was the standout for the Gunners in the first half as the visitors dominated possession, though without posing a real threat to the Middlesbrough goal until the 42nd minute, when Alexis scored on a masterful direct free kick.

Arsenal's response was impressive in the 63rd minute as Sanchez's through ball picked out Ozil, but goalkeeper Brad Guzan sensed the danger and did well to save at the feet of the German global.

Playing in an unfamiliar 3-5-2 formation, Arsenal took the lead on 42 minutes when Sanchez curled in a free-kick following a foul on Granit Xhaka by Adam Clayton.

Negredo equalised in the 50th minute as he improvised brilliantly to poke home Stewart Downing's superb cross from the right following an enterprising run.

However, Sanchez was involved again with a cross that was chested down by Aaron Ramsey, leaving Ozil with the opportunity to drill Arsenal back in front from close range.

It's been a while since Arsenal supporters have sung the infamous "We've got Ozil" chant which was previously heard with much gusto at the start of the season. We had practiced on it before but we like offensive football so this was a bit more defensive-minded for us.

"We were a bit over-cautious against Middlesbrough but hopefully the win over them will now give us more confidence", he said.

"We faced a direct game and we have been punished a bit on that".

However, former Manchester United defender Neville says that the victory will ultimately mean nothing if Arsenal lose to City on Sunday, a result which would no doubt inspire more protests against Wenger. That shows you that even at my age, you can change.

"Sometimes we want to have the ball but when a team lacks confidence just to change the system can help believe something different", he added.

'The fact we conceded three at West Brom and three at Crystal Palace, I feel it was needed. "We need to keep fighting for them".

Boro heads were down after an encouraging half ended in disappointment, but they responded quickly after the restart.

However, it worked a treat for the Gunners as they came out through their rough patch with a vital win in their 3-4-2-1 formation. That is what we needed and that's what we wanted.

"It was a competitive game as this was one of their last chances to stay in the league".

"There has been speculation over both players but that does not enter into things when match-day comes because it is all about the game then and they will always give their all".

"Obviously in recent weeks it has not gone well for us".

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