On his side’s performance…
“It was a game where we had a lot of possession. The team we played defended very well and were well organised. We were not sharp enough to create the chances and conceded two goals on two throw-ins. They fought for every ball and they waited for their set-pieces. In the end Stoke won because we didn’t create enough chances to score."

On preparing for Delap's throw-ins…

“We had a plan to deal with the throw-ins; we had worked on it. I am not sure the first one was touched by anybody. They fly into the box and it is difficult with 20 people in there. That sort of thing is not our greatest strength. We were punished and I believe we were unlucky as well."

On a traditional English match…

“People who love the traditional English game must be happy because they got what they like today. It was a traditional game with a lot of fight and commitment. At the end of the day Stoke deserved to win the game.”

On a tough schedule…
“I believe we tried very hard and I think Stoke are sharp at the moment and we looked jaded physically. At the moment we play a lot games and we suffer a little a bit because of that. It isn’t confidence but we gave a lot on Wednesday. We play again in midweek and that is why, in the repetition of games, if you don’t score first you suffer."

On Van Persie's dismissal…

“I think that the red card was very, very harsh. If you get [Andy] Griffin without a yellow card today and Robin with a red, then I have to review my rulebook. He shouldn’t have done it but I don’t think it was a red card.”

On an array of injuries…
“We have very bad injuries to Adebayor and Walcott, and there is Sagna. One or two have knocks as well. It is the kind of game we played today and when you are a little bit short on sharpness, you are less agile and get out of tackles less quickly.”

Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 1 Nov 2008