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Arsene Wenger delighted at Arsenal's win over Chelsea

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Wenger delight at 'disciplined and mature' display

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says Monday's 3-1 win over Chelsea has provided a psychological boost in the race to be Premier League champions.

It is the first time the Gunners have beaten their title rivals in six league and cup games and takes them to second, two points behind Manchester United.

"The win had a double impact. It keeps us in touch with the leaders," he said.

"It is also the psychological impact because we were questioned about our ability to win big games."

Arsenal last defeated the Blues in November 2008 and the win also ended a run of 11 games in all competitions without victory over closest rivals Chelsea and Manchester United - including 10 defeats.

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Goals from Alex Song, Cesc Fabregas and Theo Walcott secured a comfortable win at the Emirates, with Branislav Ivanovic scoring a consolation goal just before the hour for Carlo Ancelotti's team, who have now taken just six points from their last eight league games - the club's worst run since 1998.

Wenger's team have amassed 35 points from 18 games with unbeaten leaders Manchester United on 37 having played a game less and the French boss, whose side last won a trophy in 2005, was left delighted with a first win against Chelsea in five meetings.

"I'm happy with the desire in the team. We kept good discipline in the team for 90 minutes and put in a real team performance," he added.

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"Two years ago with the same players, we were maybe battered by Chelsea. Last year we felt we were getting closer.

"Maybe we played a bit with the handbrake. It was a slow learning process that we got out of our system tonight. Cesc Fabregas said we were maybe scared to win. There was a strong word, but maybe there was something in it.

"We didn't see that tonight. It was a locked game at the start, but the first goal gave a huge advantage. We are not bullied any more, that is for sure.

"It's always very difficult to say because every game is different, but I feel we have matured over the last two years."

Chelsea must wake up - Ancelotti

The defeat means Chelsea remain fourth and heaped more pressure on to Ancelotti.

Despite their ongoing problems and the Italian admitting his team had to "wake up", Wenger said he would be shocked if anybody suggested that Ancelotti's future at Stamford Bridge was in doubt.

"I personally rate Ancelotti very highly and I can't believe that [his job would be under threat]," the Arsenal boss said.



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see also
Arsenal 3-1 Chelsea
27 Dec 10 |  Premier League
We need wake-up call - Ancelotti
27 Dec 10 |  Chelsea
Monday's football photos
27 Dec 10 |  Football
Arsenal v Chelsea as it happened
27 Dec 10 |  Football


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