Per Mertesacker appeared to have been targeting top two finish in the attempt to perform the title credentials of the upcoming season


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Per Mertesacker claims Arsenal want to qualify directly for the Champions League to help launch atitle bid next season.

Arsenal”s Premier League challenge was over before it had begun this season because they managed just 17 points from their first 12 games compared to Chelsea”s haul of 32.

Skipper Mertesacker feels having to come through two tough Champions League qualifying games against Besiktas in August contributed to their slow start.

He says the Gunners are keen to avoid a similar ordeal this August by securing one of the automatic qualification spots.

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