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Emery calls for Arsenal to play with ‘personality’ after 3-2 win

Arsenal v Stade Rennais - UEFA Europa League Round of 16: Second Leg
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Unai Emery has called on Arsenal to play with “a lot of personality” following their  3-2 victory against Al-Nasr.

The Gunners fell behind early on through Ronnie Fernandez’s superb effort as Al-Nasr looked to claim a surprise friendly win in Dubai.

But Denis Suarez set-up Carl Jenkinson to cancel out Fernandez’s opener before the break, with Emery making five changes to his line-up afterwards.

Alexandre Lacazette put Arsenal into the lead after combining with Mesut Ozil, with 18-year-old John-Jules grabbing a third for the visitors.

While Julio Pleguezuelo’s penalty ensured Al Nasr of a late goal, Arsenal held on to claim victory ahead of next Monday’s return to Premier League action against Newcastle.

The Gunners are currently fourth in the standings and two points ahead of fifth-place Manchester United, who they defeated 2-0 last time out.

Therefore, Emery is calling for his players to demonstrate a similar “personality” to the one that enabled them to conquer United in each of their remaining eight league games.

“We are working and being competitive each match. Now, in these next eight matches, we need to play with a lot of personality like we did against Manchester United,” said Emery on Arsenal.com.

“We know it’s going to be difficult because we are surrounded by other big teams but I think we are working very well and we are taking confidence to have chances in the last matches.

“Each match is our next objective and we think game by game. The next game is at home with our supporters against Newcastle, so it’s up to us to enjoy each match with the possibility of finding the three points.

“Afterwards, the second way of [qualifying for the Champions League] is through the Europa League. We can play for one title and then also to take another way to reach the Champions League. We are in a good moment in good confidence, and also in a good moment physically.”