Arsenal motivated for ‘big challenge’ at Craven Cottage on Sunday

Unai Emery insists that his rejuvenated Arsenal set-up are motivated for Sunday’s Premier League encounter against Fulham at Craven Cottage, an intriguing London derby that the Spanish tactician also labelled a ‘big challenge’ due to the Cottagers’ underlying proficiency.

The Gunners swatted Qarabag aside with an assured 3-0 victory in the Europa League on Thursday, and now that the north-Londoners’ attention is fixed firmly upon their next domestic meeting on the banks of the Thames, Emery is wary of what Slavisa Jokanovic’s stuttering fold is ultimately capable of.

Emery opted to rotate his starting XI in Baku with a number of eye-catching inclusions, although as the vast majority of his contingent are fit and ready to lock horns with the Whites, the former Paris Saint-Germain boss has called for his available personnel to exhibit their dominance and put Fulham to the sword.

Speaking to the media – via Daily Star – Emery expressed: “Fulham is a very big challenge for us, first because it’s away and second because each match in the Premier League is very, very difficult.

“Fulham bought very good players like [Jean Michael] Seri, like [Andre-Frank Zambo] Anguissa, and they have [Aleksandar] Mitrovic and [Andre] Schurrle too. It’s a very good team and I think their coach is a very good coach with experience in England.

“We need to push against them on Sunday and also show our best performance. Our idea is to be focused on Sunday with all of our players.”

Competing in Europe is exceedingly strenuous and fatigue can consequentially affect a player’s exploits as the campaign progresses. Emery, however, is seemingly relishing the journey ahead of his triumphant outfit on the continent and is not fazed by the demanding fixture schedule.

“For us it’s not a problem to play on Thursday and then on Sunday because we want to play a lot of matches and a lot of competitions.” He added.

“We also want to give the players the chances and opportunities to play, to give them confidence, responsibility and rhythm like today for all our players.

“Today, the players who sometimes don’t play played, and for us it’s very important on Sunday to produce the best performance. But then also, maybe, players who played today can play on Sunday too. We can do that with some players.”

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