on fighting back for a draw
"It was the minimum at least, [that] we didn't start with a defeat. I feel that it was a typical game at the beginning of the season where the players were not completely ready, physically, because they came back late from the World Cup."

on Aston Villa
"We faced Aston Villa who defended deep, they fight for every ball. The question was for us not to make a mistake - we made one - and then of course it because very difficult. You can say that to come back to 1-1 was a little bit of relief. But overall if we were really sharp we would have won this game with three or four goals difference."

on Theo Walcott's debut
"I am happy because we were in a tricky situation when he came on, one-nil down. I know there is a lot expected from him. He played with freshness and straight away he became dangerous on the left flank and he was involved in the goal we scored. I must say that overall when he came on his performance was very positive."

on the Ashley Cole situation
"I will play him next week if I judge him fit enough to play. Everybody says Chelsea are interested in buying Ashley Cole but they have had three months now to buy him. Now we are at the beginning of a new season and if nothing happens I believe he will stay. It was down to some frustration at some stage but I don't think he is deeply unhappy to play the kind of football we play, or to play with his partners or under me."

on the start of a new era at Emirates Stadium
"The pitch is great, the fans were great and the atmosphere was great, so all we need now is for the team to be great."



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19 Aug 2006