Arsene Wenger slams Mesut Ozil's critics: Arsenal fans are wrong about this

Arsene Wenger praised Mesut Ozil after the German World Cup victor helped Arsenal to a 3-0 Premier League victory over struggling West Ham and maintain their hopes of qualifying for the Champions League on Wednesday.

"West Ham defended well in the first half and we needed to find a solution in the second half".

Arsene Wenger's men hold at least one game in hand on all of the teams above them and Walcott is hopeful they are back in the Champions League hunt.

Arsenal, fifth in the Premier League table, will look to secure back-to-back league wins for the first time since January when they travel to relegation-threatened Crystal Palace on Monday, live on Sky Sports.

Wenger's pre-match mood was not improved by injury robbing him of goalkeepers Petr Cech and David Ospina, which handed a rare Premier League start to Emiliano Martinez.

'It is time to get points and get us out of possible trouble'.

"You could see that even if the result against City wasn't what we wanted, it had a positive impact on the morale of the team", he said.

He continued: "For a while we had not had that feeling [of winning]. Going forward we are good but defensively recently we have not been efficient enough".

"We had to work for it, it has obviously been a challenging few weeks to be honest", he said.

The midfielder did not had a great game but after his goal had a purple patch in which he set up captain Theo Walcott for Arsenal's second.

Slaven Bilic had received a vote of confidence in the wake of West Ham's sticky run and it seemed to say everything that it was the travelling supporters who offered one to Wenger in the early running.

Those finishes took the Gunners' season total to 101 across all competitions - already 10 more than they managed in the entirety of last term.

"In the first half he was good, but the recovery time was basically long for him so that's why we chose to change him, to save him for Saturday". They had entered the game with the same number of points as they had at the corresponding stage of last season.

Bilic added: "They deserved to win".

"They were thinking they were going to be in Europe so they brought in players that would supplement the squad who had played European football".

It was an evening when Mesut Özil made the difference.

  • Angelo Rivera