Arsene Wenger urges Arsenal fans not to boycott Sunderland game

City need a point from their final match to be absolutely sure of Champions League football after they beat West Bromwich Albion 3-1 while fifth-placed Arsenal stayed in the hunt by beating relegated Sunderland 2-0.

"I made the decision to start Alexis at 4pm", Wenger said at a news conference.

"You will always have regrets because you could have one point more but you forget as well the games you won in the last season where you could the season after not win".

Arsenal's "fighting spirit" has returned, manager Arsene Wenger said after his side completed a third Premier League victory in a week to roar back into contention for a top-four finish.

In the other Tuesday game, Nigeria's Kelechi Iheanacho was not in the match day squad for his Manchester City team. As a result, before the last round ahead of the Welsh "Tigers" by four points, and the team Marco Silva has no chance of escape.

Sunderland come into this fixture on the back of a 2-0 defeat at home against Swansea, who have escaped relegation.

Relegated Sunderland frustrated Arsenal until Sanchez popped up to score twice from close range in the final 18 minutes, taking his tally for the league campaign to 23 goals.

Very few of these bottom-six sides the Gunners have faced would have been as poor as this Sunderland one.

There is no doubt that the "Sunderland" in this game will be very hard. He had an inconclusive fitness test on Monday and so Wenger left it as late as possible before deciding to pick his best player for this crucial game. The Gunners go into the game with three wins from their previous three games, in which they have scored eight goals. "We want to keep him with us because we know he is so important for our team". That did not look likely to happen three or four weeks ago, but we needed to be patient and it took us a while to get into our rhythm.

"You want all the teams to fight like Sunderland did tonight. That would probably get my goat up more than anything".

Arsene Wenger says Arsenal's away form has cost them in the title race. "It looks like we've been getting stronger every game".

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