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Mikel Arteta praised his Arsenal players after they bounced back from their Europa League heartache by hammering London rivals Crystal Palace.
The Gunners saw their European run come to an end at the hands of Sporting on penalties last week.
But they returned to winning ways with a comprehensive display against the Eagles in front of a buoyant home crowd.
Arsenal boss Arteta, 40, said: “The desire and the energy we put in from the beginning impressed me most.
We were really determined and focused and left Thursday in the past.
“After playing 120 minutes, they have to come back here and do it again against a team with a lot of needs.
“Palace have not got the results lately but they have been very tough to beat. We were dominant and deserved to win the game.”
Lack of respect
Paul Merson believes Mason Mount deserves more respect from Chelsea.
The England midfielder, 24, has been unable to agree a new deal with the Blues as he heads towards the final year of his contract.
And Arsenal legend Merson would not be surprised to see him move on unless the Stamford Bridge hierarchy move heaven and earth to persuade him to stay.
Writing in his Sky Sports column, he said: “Mount was by far Chelsea’s best player last season. He was outstanding.
“It’s different when you come through the ranks at a football club because you cost nothing. When you get bought for a lot of money you’re viewed as more of an asset.
“Whoever gets Mount has got the biggest result ever. The kid can play. It’s bad business by Chelsea — they should give him what he’s asking for.
“You don’t offload your best players. There are so many players that need to get shipped out of this Chelsea squad before Mount.
“When you hear whispers of the teams that want to buy him, that tells you everything you need to know.”Ban Mitro for 10 games
Chris Sutton wants Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic to be hit with a 10-MATCH ban.
Mitrovic, 28, saw red yesterday after pushing ref Chris Kavanagh as the Cottagers pressed the self-destruct button during their FA Cup quarter-final showdown with Manchester United.
Boss Marco Silva and winger Willian were also sent off as the visitors went down 3-1 at Old Trafford.
And former Chelsea and Blackburn striker Sutton, 50, believes Mitrovic should be heavily punished for his actions. Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live, he said: “He saw the red mist. That’s no excuse.
“In my opinion, it will impact further down the chain at grassroots level. There will be kids watching the game who think, ‘Well, if Mitrovic can do it, so can I’.”
Gunners fear no one
Martin Keown is loving Arsenal’s no fear attitude as they chase Premier League glory.
The Gunners thumped managerless Crystal Palace 4-1 yesterday to extend their lead at the top of the table to eight points.
And former club stalwart Keown, 56, was delighted by Bukayo Saka’s reaction after netting twice at the Emirates.
The BBC Sport pundit said: “I loved hearing Saka say Arsenal don’t fear anyone when we asked him what he thinks about the title run-in on MOTD2.
“It’s a beautiful attitude for any side to have and it’s especially important in the situation that Saka and his team-mates are in now, eight points clear of Manchester City at the top of the table with 10 games to go.
“I know from my own experiences as an Arsenal player that when you reach this stage of the season with a chance of winning the Premier League, your eyes are drawn straight to the fixture list. “The finish line is in sight and you kind of go into countdown mode, working through your remaining games.”
Vieira exit was a shock
Joel Ward admits he and his Crystal Palace team-mates were shocked to learn Patrick Vieira had been sacked.
Vieira, 46, left his role as Palace boss last Friday after overseeing a winless run of 11 league games, stretching back to New Year’s Eve.
The Eagles failed to score in his last four matches in charge and he was axed by chairman Steve Parish ahead of Sunday’s 4-1 defeat at Premier League leaders Arsenal.
Defender Ward, 33, said: “I think anything like that comes as a bit of a surprise.
“The tough thing in football is that it’s a results business and we had a tough run of games and the hierarchy have made the decision about the direction they want to go.
“We have to respect that and make sure as a club right from the top, fans to players, we all get together and take care of business.
“Ultimately, we’re the only ones that can do that on the pitch so we have to stand up and be accountable for that.”