Arsenal's head coach Unai Emery
Arsenal's head coach Unai Emery gestures during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Southampton at the Emirates Stadium in London on February 24, 2019. Image Credit: AFP

London: Unai Emery praised Arsenal’s intensity after they leapfrogged Manchester United to move into the Premier League’s top four with a 2-0 win over Southampton on Sunday.

Emery’s much-changed team were on cruise control at the Emirates Stadium thanks to early goals by Alexandre Lacazette and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

And now the Arsenal manager hopes his players can maintain that intensity as a congested fixture list forces him into further squad rotation.

Emery made five changes to the starting line-up that beat Bate Borisov 3-0 in the Europa League on Thursday and he expects to make more for Wednesday’s home league game against Bournemouth.

“This is the moment we can use fresh players with energy and quality,” he said.

“We need to mix to save players because we are going to play a lot of matches.

“It’s important to give good performances like today’s even when we have to change some players in the first eleven.

“On Thursday I was very proud of them in a dangerous match and today we decided to make some changes and it is very important that we carried on our intensity and our performance with different players.

“We could have won by a bigger difference than two goals but if we keep playing with this intensity then goals will come.

“My problem is when we cannot create chances.”