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Arsenal boss Emery ready to face road tests

Tough run-in for Gunners as away-day fixtures start with ‘big challenge’ at Everton

05 April, 2019 — By Steve Barnett

Unai Emery: ‘It’s going to be very difficult, but step by step we’ve started to rise up the table after the first two matches in the Premier League when we lost against Manchester City and Chelsea. We are improving’

UNAI Emery is calling on his charges to show the same consistency on their travels as they do at the Emirates Stadium as Arsenal gear up for an end-of-season run-in on the road.

The Gunners face “a big challenge” on Sunday when they tackle in-form Everton at Goodison Park. It kickstarts a run of fixtures that will see the north Londoners play five of their remaining seven Premier League games away from home – not to mention a two-legged tie against Napoli in the quarter-finals of the Europa League.

With a place in the Champions League next season very much up for grabs, Emery says he wants to give supporters something to shout about.

But to do that his players must first continue to show that they have “big spirit” when it matters most.

“My first target is to create a big atmosphere with our supporters – and I think we are creating that little by little,” said the Spaniard.

“We also need to convince people that we can be consistent away. On Sunday, and in all of our remaining matches, it’s going to be difficult, so we need to be consistent.

“The game at Everton is going to be a big challenge for us because each match is so hard in the Premier League, especially away from home.”

Emery added: “I want to create a very big mentality with the players and the supporters.

“We were playing some matches, not being consistent, and conceding a lot of chances to the opposition. But I think in the last matches, against Newcastle and Manchester United for example, we are winning and not conceding goals.

“Our target is very clear. It’s going to be very difficult, but step by step we’ve started to rise up the table after the first two matches in the Premier League when we lost against Manchester City and Chelsea. We are improving.”

Ainsley Maitland-Niles is among the players hoping that the big mentality Emery is trying to instil leads the club back to European football’s top table.

“It’s every team’s dream to play Champions League football,” he said.

“It’s the best European competition in the world. To play against all the big teams would be fantastic and you get to test yourself fully.”

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