The Black Cats put up a fight in the first-half but were ultimately blown away at the Emirates.
He told Sky Sports: "I thought we had a really good spell. We grew in confidence. Our quality was on show. Arsenal found it quite difficult to get us off the ball in the final third.
"I'm very proud of the players.
"A couple of the goals were poor, good from an Arsenal point of view. The bigger picture for us is the learning experience. We said now they know the standard. When you feel the quality of the opposition you learn so much more.
"Arsenal were fantastic.
"There's a lot of positives. Big shoutout to our support because that was phenomenal."
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