Arsene Wenger has praised Arsenal's performance in the 3-0 victory over Chelsea, hailing a "nearly perfect" first half. However, the win came at a price as Francis Coquelin left the Emirates Stadium in a brace due to a knee injury.
The Gunners had not beaten the Blues in the Premier League since 2011. However, goals from Alexis Sanchez, Theo Walcott and Mesut Ozil during an impressive opening 45 minutes were enough to change that history and secure all three points. Wenger was a very happy man afterwards but believes that there is still room for improvement.
"I feel, especially in the first half, we wanted to play with high pace, put them under pressure, play at a very high collective connection and speed of passing - it worked quite well," the Arsenal boss said after the game.
"It's one of those moments in your life as a manager where you think 'today is a great day'. In the first half, I think it was nearly perfect. In the second half it was a bit in-and-out but in the first half, we have shown great quality. We played with style, with pace, with movement - and that's the kind of football we want to play."
"I felt that in the last three weeks, our team was on the way up. Today was a good test for us to see if that's real, if we could continue to move upwards. Would Chelsea stop our progression? Overall the quality of our performance today confirmed that we are on the way up. From the goalkeeper to the centre forward, today you cannot fault any performance. Now let's continue to improve. There's still room for improvement. Let's show as well that we can defend together the style of football we want to play."
The day was not quite perfect for Arsenal as Coquelin was replaced by Granit Xhaka after suffering a knee issue. Wenger admitted his concerns about the injury after the French midfielder already missed around three months last season due to a problem in the same area.
"He has a knee injury in the same place he had last year, that's a negative of the day," Wenger confirmed. "We don't know if the damage is as big at the moment, we have to wait for 48 hours but he left the stadium in a brace. I'm a bit worried over that."