Arsenal's Robin van Persie
Arsenal's Robin van Persie Reuters

Arsenal captain Robin van Persie says the Gunners, who have fought hard and come a long way to hold third position in the league today, should focus and concentrate on retaining that position, a report in The Sun quotes the Dutchman as saying.

The 28 year old forward has scored a total of 34 goals in 44 appearances (in all competitions) for the club and added they must beat Chelsea in their game on Sunday, particularly after having lost their last game, to Wigan.

"We have to be at our best and forget the loss over Wigan. It was a tough game last Monday. To concede two early goals at home is not how you want to start a game. Wigan played very well - credit to them. After they took the lead they defended very well. It was hard for us to pick through their defence and create proper chances. It was a bad night for us," van Persie explained.

The star striker feels Arsenal will be in for a tough time against the Blues, particularly because they have been in good form since the sacking of former coach Andre Villas-Boas.

"I am sure it's not going to be an easy game for us. Chelsea are also going to give it their all. They also want to qualify for the Champions League as well as make up for their 5-3 loss against us at Stamford Bridge. And they will do this with confidence after their win over Barcelona. I have watched the game and saw how well they defended their lead. That is the danger of Chelsea, their counter-attack," he added.

Nevertheless, van Persie will be confident in his side and the comeback they have made, after dropping outside the top 10 in the league table, after their September loss to Blackburn.

"We want to make up for it. As long as we play our game and keep focused, we can beat anybody," he added.

The Gunners, who have been plagued by the long-term injuries to German defender Per Mertesacker, English midfielder Jack Wilshere and French midfielder Francis Coquelin, will be again crippled by the absence of Spanish midfielder Mikel Arteta, who has been ruled out for the remainder of the season after picking up an injury during Arsenal's 1-2 loss to Wigan.

"I have to mention what a shame it is that we have lost Mikel Arteta for the rest of the season on top of the news that Jack Wilshere's season is over and he won't play at the Euros. Mikel has been a great signing since he arrived from Everton," he added.

Meanwhile, van Persie also, like Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, feels that video technology should be introduced in football to aid the referees in making important decisions.

"There is a big issue in the game right now over goal line technology. My view is it has to be brought in to stop mistakes happening like in the FA Cup semi-final last Sunday. Everyone watching on television could see that Juan Mata's shot didn't cross the line but the referee gave the goal. These mistakes happen, but they can be avoided," he added.

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