arsenal v manchester united

Fletcher ready for tough fight with Arsenal

November 7, 2008
By Soccernet staff

Manchester United midfielder Darren Fletcher is preparing for Arsenal to "come out fighting'' at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday lunchtime.

John Terry
GettyImages / TomPurslowDarren Fletcher: Battle lies in wait

The Scottish international also commented that the Gunners are missing something to become winners again, insisting Arsene Wenger must produce more than just quality passing to pick up trophies.

The Gunners, wounded both in terms of pride and fitness, are troubled by injury and suspension ahead of the visit of the Premier League champions and Fletcher is expecting Arsene Wenger's side to roll their sleeves up.

After losing to Stoke City in a robust encounter last weekend the Gunners drew a blank against Fenerbahce in the Champions League in midweek. Those results and the lack of fight in their play has led many to dismiss their chances of silverware this term.

"They will come out fighting,'' Fletcher said. "I am sure they will have been hurt by the criticism they have had with certain teams saying this and that. They will have read all the comments, so they will be coming out to show they are not all just about passing and flair.

"Arsenal have top quality players and I am sure they will be hurting. But criticism like that will only spur them on.

"Sometimes you need more than good quality and good passing to win you games. Maybe that has hit home to the after all the criticism.

"They don't normally get a lot of criticism. They get praise for playing the right way and they still get it even though they have not won much for a while.

"But criticism is part of being at a great club. It is something you have to deal with at Manchester United because expectations are so high. If you don't reach those expectations you get criticised and rightly so. Sometimes it is a bit harsh but you have to deal with it.''