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Exclusive: Arsenal defender sends out Aston Villa and Everton warnings

Bacary Sagna, Arsenal Bacary Sagna, Arsenal

Thursday, November 22, 2012
3:09 PM

Bacary Sagna guards against complacency ahead of away double-header as Gunners target top four

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Bacary Sagna has warned that Arsenal must repeat their derby heroics on the road as the Gunners prepare for a tough double-header of away games at Villa Park and then Goodison Park.

Last Saturday’s 5-2 thrashing of Spurs sent the Gunners up to sixth in the Premier League table, ahead of Saturday’s trip to Aston Villa and then fifth-placed Everton on Wednesday night.

And French right-back Sagna told London24: “No games are easy any more, we know that. Aston Villa will be difficult, it is never easy there, and of course Everton too.

“At the start of the season we did well away from home but we have lost the games at Manchester United and to Norwich and we know this is important now, these two games.

“We have to keep going now. The season is long, we have won a big game against Tottenham but it is not enough. We have to keep winning.”

Sagna, who returned to the side in October following five months out with a broken leg, admitted that the win over Spurs will give the Gunners much-needed confidence.

“We knew we had to do well in this game. We have lost some games and we knew that the other teams have been winning, like Manchester City and Manchester United. We had to get the points and we did that. It was the derby, it was important for the club and for the fans.

“The supporters have helped us, they have kept pushing us and we have given them something back on Saturday, but we have to do more. We have to give the maximum on the pitch and play our football.”

While Villa are languishing in the bottom three, Everton are fifth after their best start in years and Sagna feels that David Moyes’s side will be genuine challengers for the Champions League spots.

“We know they are a good side, they have good players. They are up there and will battle for the fourth place this season so that is another really important game for us,” continued the 29-year-old.

“But we just need to focus on ourselves, when we play well like we did on Saturday we know we can score goals and win games. We did it on Saturday, we showed a good mentality and now we have to keep going.”

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Arsenal

Nickname: The Gunners.

Ground: Emirates Stadium (capacity 60,361).

Founded: 1886.

Honours: First Division (until 1992) and Premier League: 1931, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1938, 1948, 1953, 1971, 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002, 2004.

FA Cup: 1930, 1936, 1950, 1971, 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002, 2003, 2005.

League Cup: 1987, 1993.

Fairs Cup: 1970.

Cup Winners’ Cup: 1994.

Leading goalscorer: Thierry Henry, 228.

Leading appearances: David O’Leary, 722.