Thomas Vermaelen tips Arsenal to be buoyed by FA Cup semi-final victory over Wigan
Thomas Vermaelen admitted Arsenal's FA Cup semi-final victory over Wigan was crucial to the club's hopes of success.
Last Updated: 13/04/14 1:49pm
Belgium defender Vermaelen felt the Gunners' 4-2 penalty shoot-out victory over Wigan at Wembley, after the tie finished 1-1 in normal time, was evidence of the belligerent spirit in the camp.
France Under-21 striker Yaya Sanogo wasted a hatful of chances to put Arsenal out of sight before Jordi Gomez handed Wigan the lead from the spot.
Per Mertesacker headed Arsenal level before the game meandered to penalties, where goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski pulled off two saves to seal victory.
"There was a lot of talk about needing the result for a few different reasons, for the manager and showing we could fight and I think we did that," said Vermaelen.
"It will give us a boost for the rest of the season now, we can move forward with confidence.
"I'm very happy that we'll go to the final, that's why you play these games of course.
"It was a long game with extra-time and penalties, it's never easy but it's a good win."
Arsenal host West Ham on Tuesday night in a quickfire return to Premier League action, but Vermaelen said the tight schedule must not cause any problems.
"It was a long day and a quick turnaround but we've done that before, playing Saturday and Tuesday, so we can't use that as an excuse," he said.
"I don't think they will come to the Emirates and just settle, I think they will come to win.
"We have to make sure we compete hard for the victory now because they certainly will."
France striker Olivier Giroud challenged Arsenal to end their trophy drought and lift the FA Cup, for boss Wenger as much as anyone else.
"It's been a long time without a trophy as everyone knows, and now we have an excellent chance to change that," said Giroud.
"We really want to win it for the fans, for the club and for the boss as well, it would be huge for him."