English Premiership

Injuries hurt us - Wenger

2015-05-01 12:38
Arsene Wenger (Supplied)

London - Although pleased with the progress of his Arsenal side this season, manager Arsene Wenger is frustrated injuries have hampered the Gunners' premier league challenge.

Fourth-placed finishers for the last two seasons, Arsenal currently sit third, level on 67 points with second-placed Manchester City, but with a game in hand.

The Gunners have not lost in the league since a 2-1 away defeat away to north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur in February, but despite their fine run of form they are 13 points behind champions-elect Chelsea.

"We have made progress so I look at it in a positive way," Wenger told reporters on Friday. "What you want to show during the season, is that you are getting better. We were faced with a big challenge especially with Chelsea out in front.

"They have proved to be more consistent from the start to the end and we weren't able to reel them in.

"We had injuries to key players after the World Cup. We needed to find balance in the team. Looking back, we dropped big points... and that was a big disappointment."

Chelsea can seal the title with a win against Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge on Sunday, and Wenger believes their ability to grind out results is what sets them apart from the rest.

"Once you are fighting for the Championship you win some games because you smell you can do it, games that you don't necessarily win if you are fourth or fifth. That doesn't always represent the value of the team," Wenger said.

"The gap is there because they have been more consistent than us from start to end. They had a very strong start, and that got them through to the end."

Arsenal travel to Hull City on Monday hoping to edge ahead of Manchester City in the race for second place, and leave fourth-placed Manchester United further behind.

"Manchester City had ups and downs and started stronger than us and were in front for a long time. Manchester United had a slow start and became stronger," Wenger said.

"We fight with each other to show who will be the best at the end. The only thing I can say is if we do well we can get in front of them."

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