Yaya Sanogo Arsenal
Yaya Sanogo scored his first ever Arsenal goal in the Champions League game against Borussia DortmundReuters

If Arsenal would play like they did against Borussia Dortmund in their Champions League Group D match every time, especially against the bigger teams, they would not have too many problems.

On Wednesday, in front of a nervous, "man we hope we don't see another capitulation" Emirates crowd, Arsenal showed they are capable of playing the big games like they should, after all, scoring that early goal, showing plenty of defensive resoluteness and then finding the second goal to finish the game off against Borussia Dortmund.

The performance was all the more impressive as Dortmund had come into this Group D game with a 100 percent record and with the confidence of having overwhelmed the Gunners in the reverse fixture at the Westfalenstadion on Matchday One.

"We had a good start and overall it was a very intense game between two very good teams where you had to fight for every ball and be focused," said a relieved and "I told you we were better than this" Arsene Wenger.

"I felt we had a good combination between our usual passing game and our transition from defence to attack. We were highly focused to defend well together from the first to the last minute and we always looked dangerous. Defensively we were very good as well."

All the pressure was on Arsenal heading into this matchup after three games without a win, including two straight defeats, but that pressure eased up considerably with less than three minutes on the clock when Yaya Sanogo slotted past Roman Weidenfeller for his first goal for the club after taking a pass from Santi Cazorla, who, for the first time this season, actually looked like Santi Cazorla, rather than a pale imitation.

Arsenal then showed good defensive awareness, before putting the game to bed just before the hour mark courtesy a beautiful Alexis Sanchez strike.

"We were more under pressure because on Saturday [a 2-1 loss to Manchester United in the English Premier League] we played well but maybe we were victims of our generous attitude going forward," added Wenger. "Here we had a bit more urgency to defend, especially when we were 1-0 up.

"We talked about it [staying disciplined defensively]. The difference in the big games is being 1-0 up or 1-0 down. When you're 1-0 down you have to chase the game and sometimes you want it so much -- especially when you control the game like we did on Saturday.

"We had 60 penalty area entries on Saturday and Manchester United had 17 so we were always forward. The risk you have when you have to chase a goal is that you get caught on the break. Here we were in a different tactical situation."

Arsenal certainly did not show their naivety against Dortmund, much like they did in their last three matches. The Champions League performance was especially impressive considering their last match in Europe's elite competition did not go too well, when they pressed the self-destruct button from 3-0 up against Anderlecht.

Despite the win, however, Arsenal still look likely to only qualify in second place behind Dortmund, who have a two point lead over their opponents. That draw against Anderlecht cost Arsenal more than they would like to admit, and even Wenger said he hopes to avoid one of those "oh man not again" draws in the last 16 of the Champions League.

"If you look at the last five or six years we got the teams we didn't want," said Wenger. "From now until February we need to improve as a team, get encouragement from [this] game and then hope we have nearly all our players back in the next round.

"You see who is qualified around Europe and there are many teams who are at the top, top level. There are three or four teams you don't want to play."

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