The Manchester United and Arsenal match on Sunday, November 10 at Old Trafford was not one that contained a clutch of chance but, instead, was a tactical encounter, according to Red Devils striker Robin van Persie, who told MUTV that his insider's knowledge of the 'specific' way that the Gunners play helped shape his own side's work-ethic.
According to van Persie, who scored the game's only goal, you have to alter your tactics… you have to 'play a different way' in order to defeat them. That includes hard work on the training ground, ensuring the team's collective endurance is capable of chasing every ball and limiting the amount of chances Arsenal have.
'Arsenal have a really specific way of playing, which I know of course, so you have to play a slightly different game to beat them,' said van Persie, who transferred to United in 2012 for £22.25m, before singling out defender Patrice Evra for praise.
'I think we did that today, we did really well to close everyone down. If you look at Evra, who went for every single ball, even the forward players did that. It makes a big difference.
'I think we did well in the second half though, we were under a bit more pressure without conceding many chances. We had two big opportunities; one for Wayne, and one for Chris Smalling. It wasn’t a game of many chances, but one of tactics, and we had the right attitude.'
The victory saw United rise to fifth position in the Premier League table, closing the gap on pace-setting Arsenal to five points.
image: © nasmac