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Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker backs Gunners

By Western Daily Press  |  Posted: April 30, 2014

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Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker feels that the Gunners have answered their critics by closing in on UEFA Champions League qualification again.

The north London side took a significant step towards securing a top-four finish with a 3-0 home win over Newcastle United on Monday.

Arsenal are now four points clear of Everton with just two games to go, and the Germany international said: "We have struggled heavily with a couple of injuries, but we have regrouped very well.

"Securing Champions League football was another test for us. It is not done yet," Mertesacker added, "but we have it in our own hands."

Manchester United midfielder Adnan Januzaj will be included in Belgium's preliminary World Cup squad, head coach Marc Wilmots has confirmed.

Last week Wilmots revealed Januzaj had pledged his international allegiance to Belgium despite interest from England, Albania, Kosovo, Turkey and Serbia.

Januzaj will have a chance to impress Wilmots at a pre-World Cup training camp next month, although the Belgium coach has warned the teenager that he is not guaranteed to make his final 23 for Brazil.

Ajax coach Frank de Boer is open to speaking with Tottenham Hotspur about taking over as manager at the end of the Premier League season, if Tim Sherwood is replaced as boss at White Hart Lane.

The former Netherlands international has been first-team coach at Ajax since 2010, and he has led the Amsterdam side to a fourth successive title.

De Boer told the Dutch media: "I'm going to think about this possibility [of the Tottenham job] after the last league fixture [for Ajax] on May 3. I'm going to talk and listen."

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