Alexis Sanchez and Olivier Giroud have the "mental strength" to spearhead Arsenal's charge for Champions League qualification, according to Arsene Wenger.
Chile striker Sanchez claimed his first goal in eight games while Giroud further erased memories of his Monaco nightmare as Arsenal eased past QPR 2-1 at Loftus Road.
Arsenal boss Wenger believes heavy criticism of Giroud's profligate showing in 3-1 Champions League home defeat to Monaco "was a bit harsh".
He hailed Sanchez as a striker who "never gives up" and backed Giroud to keep shrugging off whatever setbacks come his way.
"It's good because when you don't score for seven or eight games it is on your mind even if you say it's not," said Wenger of Sanchez's neat finish.
"But he took his chance well and he's tricky and has a short back-lift and scored a good goal.
"He never gives up and that's the strength of a good striker as well.
"He's resilient and he showed that he has the mental strength to respond.
"Olivier (Giroud) has that mental strength as well, he's strong mentally too.
QPR 1 Arsenal 2 player ratings
QPR 1 Arsenal 2 player ratings
1/22 Rob Green 6
Put under pressure much more in the second half. Difficult to criticise him for the two Arsenal. If it wasn’t for him the difference between the sides would have been greater. A strong save to deny Ozil late on.
2/22 Suk-Young Yun 5
A danger for Bellerin in the early stages of the game but the Arsenal right back soon worked out what he was trying to do - take advantage of the overlap. Aimless balls forward meant the opposition were able to regroup quickly.
3/22 Nedum Onuoha 5
Clashed heads with Caulker towards the end of the first half. He was replaced by Clint Hill minutes before half-time due to injury.
4/22 Steven Caulker 5
Effective at defending Arsenal corners. Though he was sloppy when put under pressure by Sanchez and Giroud.
5/22 Darnell Furlong 5
Similar to Yun, he chose to push forward and attack the right flank. Very good range of passing too. Defensively, though, he was poor. That was proven when Sanchez easily skipped past him before scoring Arsenal’s second.
6/22 Matt Phillips 7
A constant threat on the right side of the QPR midfield. His powerful volley from 25 yards on the hour would have been a contender for goal of the season had it crashed into Ospina’s net. Provided the assist for Austin’s goal.
7/22 Karl Henry 4
Often went missing in midfield. Too many misplaced passes from him meant QPR’s attack broke down quickly.
8/22 Sandro 6
Did well on his return back from a knee injury. Looked to progress play where possible and fed Austin particularly well. Tired in the second half and was replaced by Niko Kranjcar on 56 minutes.
9/22 Junior Hoilett 7
Did well to track back and defend. Stayed close to Rosicky. Always a threat when he got near the Gunners’ penalty area. He was replaced by Mauricio Isla on 73 minutes.
10/22 Charlie Austin 7
Threatened the Arsenal defence early on. He wasn’t afraid to shoot either. His goal late on that gave QPR brief hope of getting a point was brilliant.
11/22 Bobby Zamora 6
Demonstrated why he can still make an impact in the Premier League even if he did start to tire shortly after half-time.
12/22 David Ospina 6
Relatively comfortable evening. Austin’s shots on target were in the centre of his goal and didn’t trouble the goalkeeper. Beaten by a beautiful effort by the striker - may have done a little better.
13/22 Hector Bellerin 6
Got the better of Yun on the left side of the QPR defence numerous times. He was allowed plenty of space on the overlap but his final ball was often poor.
14/22 Per Mertesacker 6
Back in central defence after he was on the substitutes’ bench against Everton. He did well against the physical Zamora.
15/22 Gabriel Paulista 5
Struggled with the presence of Zamora. He was replaced on 36 minutes by Laurent Koscielny due to injury.
16/22 Kieran Gibbs 7
Linked up very well with Sanchez in the second half. His penetrating runs down the left made it difficult for Furlong.
17/22 Tomas Rosicky 6
Misplaced pass. Marked well by Hoilett. His creativity was stifled in the first half but in the second he found a slightly better range of passing.
2015 Getty Images
18/22 Francis Coquelin 6
His first match since sustaining a broken nose in the home win against Everton. The game seemed to bypass him at times.
19/22 Santi Cazorla 7
His usual skillful self. He started alongside Coquelin in the deep-lying playmaker position but it was only when he drove forward that he was effective.
20/22 Mesut Ozil 7
Started the attack that led to Arsenal’s opening goal. Positioned behind Giroud, the German became more important as the game wore on.
21/22 Olivier Giroud 7
Not particularly convincing in the first half. He chose more often than not to fire aimlessly from outside the area. That changed in the second half. His goal set Arsenal on their way.
22/22 Alexis Sanchez 8
More of a threat in the second half as he started to cut in from the left. Roamed all over Arsenal’s attack. He should have scored when he was one-on-one with Green. Redeemed himself when he doubled his side’s lead on 70 minutes after skillful play.
"He can take criticism and respond, and he's shown that.
"I feel that was a bit harsh on him because he missed some chances but that can happen.
"We were all down after the Monaco game, but we responded well against Everton, and the confidence we got against Everton paid off tonight."
Wenger confirmed Spanish defender Gabriel came off in the first-half with hamstring trouble.
He admitted he is unsure whether his side face an easier Barclays Premier League run in than their top-four rivals.
Arsenal maintained third spot on Wednesday, but were unable to steal a march with the rest of the top four also victorious.
Wenger admitted Arsenal were "nervous" in the first-half, and frustrated to turn around with the game goalless.
Charlie Austin fired a late goal for the hosts, but the Gunners were able to hold out for their 10th victory in 12 games.
"It's hot up there, yes, because everybody won tonight," said Wenger.
"We can only focus on our performances and keep going.
"We have 10 games to go, six at home four away, so we can only keep going.
"I haven't studied the other teams' games, but until mid-April there are five or so teams fighting not to go down and the same fighting to get into Europe.
"Whether the other teams have easier games I don't know.
"We were nervous in the first-half I felt, and they competed physically.
"They stopped us playing all over the pitch and Sandro played a big part in that."
Head coach Chris Ramsey admitted it is "imperative" QPR keep pace with their relegation rivals, after losing ground on Aston Villa across the midweek fixtures.
Rangers host Tottenham at Loftus Road on Saturday, with boss Ramsey admitting his side can ill afford a fourth consecutive home loss.
"The last thing we want to do is start getting detached," said Ramsey.
"So it's imperative that doesn't happen.
"Everything is in cup-final mode now.
"We wouldn't want that because that in itself creates anxiety and doesn't allow you to play in a smooth way.
"When I embarked on this situation I didn't think it was going to be a walk in the park.
"The players themselves know they have an obligation to the fans and to the owners to put in performances for the next few games."