Wenger: Home form crucial to title challenge

28 September 2012 01:48

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes his side's home form will dictate whether they can mount a sustained challenge for the Barclays Premier League title.

The Gunners head into Saturday's showdown with leaders Chelsea unbeaten this season and Wenger has challenged his side to make Emirates Stadium a fortress as they look to last the distance this time around.

"If we do well at home against the strong teams, it will of course have a big impact on our chances in the league," said Wenger.

"We have played one [big team] where we got some belief, against Manchester City away. Saturday it is another one, but it is a different one because we are at home."

Despite Arsenal earning praise for their performance in last weekend's 1-1 draw at City, which they could well have won but for Gervinho blasting over from a good position in stoppage time, Wenger maintains it is "still a bit early" to be talking up any side.

"You will know more about us after 10 games or 15 games," he said. "I believe in our potential, but we have to show that we are capable to deal with all kinds of problems that consistency demands. We will certainly know a bit more about us on Saturday afternoon - but much more about us after 10 or 15 games."

After a slow start with successive 0-0 draws, Arsenal have now hit nine league goals, conceding just twice.

Wenger, though, knows the likes of Lukas Podolski, Gervinho and Olivier Giroud, who finally opened his Arsenal account with a goal against Coventry in midweek, cannot afford to be wasteful against Chelsea.

"We had a difficult start on that front because we played Sunderland and Stoke and could not score. After that when we started to score, you felt in every game we had the chances to score," Wenger said on Arsenal Player.

"For us it is more about converting the chances we have into goals. Our conversion rate from goal chance into goals is very important."

Source: PA