Arsene Wenger admits Top Four finish is hard for Arsenal

Arsene Wenger is the latest manager to play three at the back while Antonio Conte has enjoyed great success with the system

Arsene Wenger is the latest manager to play three at the back while Antonio Conte has enjoyed great success with the system

Goals from Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil canceled out Alvaro Negredo's equalizer to keep the Gunners' thin Champions League qualification hopes alive.

The table after Monday night's 2-1 home defeat by Arsenal made for hard reading on Teesside with Boro lying in 19th place, six points adrift of Hull in 17th with six games remaining and without a league win since December 17.

Although the Frenchman accepted that the display was far from flawless, Wenger was thrilled with the level of commitment from his players, having seen them crumble in a 3-0 loss at Crystal Palace last time out.

"I felt we were focused and committed".

"We kept going, kept getting into risky positions and in the end, we came away with the three points".

On that win, Ramsey added: "They're fighting for points at the bottom but we're fighting to get back on track, so it was important to get the three points".

Teams have followed Chelsea's switch to three at the back- with success
Teams have followed Chelsea's switch to three at the back- with success

"We'd done it in the week and then we did it Sunday but I wasn't in the team and I wasn't sure if I was playing or not and it wasn't until today that I found out I was in the back three, so that was good".

The report claims the defender will replace Nacho Monreal as the club's first choice left-back and will sign a four-year contract.

'We had practiced on it before at some stage, (but) we like offensive football so this was a bit more defensive-minded for us. "We let them have the ball a bit more than we're used to". Against Palace and West Brom, we had 70 percent of the possession and we lost.

Boro boss Steve Agnew was hugely frustrated to take nothing from the match but insisted that his players showed they have a chance of surviving, despite the six-point gap between them and safety. Hopefully, that will give us a bit more confidence. "We couldn't ask more of them", he told Sky Sports.

"We can do that, but also we will have to - had we not won against Middlesbrough I would have conceded that the top four was beyond us". "We need to put the pressure on them and see how they deal with it".

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