Football Expert & Columnist
Arsenal must show fight against Manchester United, says Jamie Redknapp
Last Updated: 07/05/17 9:52am
Arsenal need to show heart and desire against Manchester United, following their disappointing derby defeat to Tottenham, says Jamie Redknapp.
It's time for the Arsenal players to stand up and show the fight and desire their fans have been demanding of them.
I said after their 2-0 north London derby defeat at Tottenham last weekend that there were too many passengers in the red shirts of Arsenal. Well, there needs to be an attitude shift against Manchester United on Sunday.
The Arsenal supporters will have been hurting after that White Hart Lane game and, make no mistake, when you lose a big derby away from home, the next week your home fans are ready for you. Ready to get onto you.
You have to show a good attitude, to show hunger and desire and that you care. That's something Arsenal players have been accused of lacking this season but they need to start quickly against Manchester United, crash into tackles and get their fans on side.
Mesut Ozil has been a target for the critics and if you compared his contribution last week with that of Christian Eriksen the difference in their output was staggering.
I've always been a big fan of Ozil and there's no doubt he's one of the most talented players in the league. But when he's not on it, there's a fine line between looking like a great player and someone who looks like they couldn't care less.
He looks unhappy and when he's not playing well, because of his disposition, because of how languid he is, it accentuates it even more.
You have to show hunger and desire and that you care. That's something Arsenal players have been accused of lacking this season
There are obviously factors behind his frustration - from his contract situation to playing in a struggling team - and that's having a knock-on effect on his performance but, like his team-mates, he needs to get himself motivated for an important end to the season.
Despite the negative feeling around the club, there's still a lot to play for at Arsenal. They can still grab a top-four finish but they also have to stay focused on the FA Cup final.
If you said to me at the start of the year, win the FA Cup or finish in the top four, I'd rather win the FA Cup. It's only when you finish your career you can say those things - because you don't look back and say 'remember when we finished fourth'.
But we all know momentum is crucial in football and Arsene Wenger and the Arsenal supporters will be looking for a performance from their players this Sunday.
It will be interesting to see which team Jose Mourinho fields, after saying he is going to have to rest players and prioritise the second leg of their Europa League semi-final with Celta Vigo. But the top four is still within reach and he won't want to write that off easily.
That said, if United win the Europa League and EFL Cup, I'd say that's a very successful season and a good platform to build on for next year.
As for this weekend, though, I think Arsenal will come out on top. I can see lots of goals going in but if the home side turn up ready for a battle and ready to deliver on the big stage, they have the ability to come out on top and end United's long unbeaten run.