Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that he is pleased at how the entire team is focused for every game, more than ever in his entire tenure at north London. The Gunners will play their fourth group game of the campaign against Red Star Belgrade in the Europa League, having won the three previous games despite fielding a heavily rotated squad on each occasion.
A win at the Emirates on Thursday (2 November) will seal their place in the last 32 but the Arsenal boss will resist the temptation to call upon Alexandre Lacazette, Mesut Ozil or Alexis Sanchez with a trip to Manchester City looming on Sunday. Instead, he will keep faith in the eleven that combined so brilliantly to seal a victory in Belgrade a fortnight ago.
Sead Kolasinac, who arrived on a free transfer from Schalke this summer, has been ruled out of the fixture after suffering a recurrence of a hip injury in Saturday's victory over Swansea City. He is also a major doubt for Sunday's trip to the Etihad Stadium — Arsenal's biggest test of the season so far. Wenger believes that the current bunch is capable of doing anything given the good understanding between them.
"I personally believe my biggest pleasant experience is how focused the whole squad is in every single game," Wenger told Arsenal's official website. "That is the first time in my life that I see that, how united and focused the entire squad is.
"I am really honest when I say that. You cannot say that any player, in any competition, has gone a little bit easy. the focus of the team has always been exceptional.
"The key to that is the fact that there is a good understanding in the squad. They all know each other well and play together for quite a while. They have had positive and negative experiences and they always responded well and I think there is respect within the squad that is an important ingredient."