on the performance…
We showed we are very strong spirit-wise and we were dominant in the challenges. We were prepared, highly-focused, defensively very strong overall. Offensively we still have some work to do because we miss a bit of accuracy in final third, in our movement and in our passing. We are used to finding each other blind in the final third and there is still something missing. But I still think we should have won the game 1-0.

You have to give credit to Stoke as well, they defend very well and they have experience at the back. They are very strong defensively and as long as we didn't score an opener they were happy with a point, you could see that. Is it a point gained or two dropped? I would say it is two dropped on the game but it is maybe a good point because it is difficult for everybody to take points at Stoke.

on what is missing up front…
It is an understanding because you have Cazorla, Podolski, Giroud… one month ago they didn't know each other. So that will come. There is some work to do on the training ground but you can feel the potential. You can see as well that there is something missing - we are not spontaneous enough in some situations. I am very positive about my team. People will say 'OK, you didn't score for two games' and I cannot deny that. We played against two teams who defend very well as a unit - Sunderland and Stoke. Overall I believe we can be a good surprise in this championship.

on references to Robin van Persie…
Of course [that will happen]. Look, if you want to convince me that we lost an exceptional player, you are wasting your time. I was the first to say that. We have to find a way to get around that by sharing the goals more than we did before with Van Persie. I think we can do that. Giroud scored 20, Podolski scored 20, and I am convinced we will get some goals from Diaby and Ramsey, Walcott, Gervinho. We have to share that around a little bit.

on criticism of the strikers…

I do not listen too much to what people say [on TV]. I listen and I try to see if it is exaggerated or not. I have worked for 30 years on the football pitch every day, and I know what it is to improve a football player and what it is to go out morning and afternoon and try to make a player. Not everybody can say that.

on building the understanding…
It can be very quick. The more you speak about the problem, the bigger it becomes in our game. Giroud does not have to think that he has to replace Van Persie with the number of goals he needs to score. We want to play as a team and if we play as a team we will score goals. I would just like to say I had the same questions when Thierry Henry left as I have had with Robin van Persie, exactly the same. And even last year I had to answer questions about why I played Van Persie as a centre forward. You have to take that into perspective and what for me is positive is that you feel there is potential there.

on fears of making a slow start…
We played a 0-0 against Sunderland and we came here today and we have taken a point. Some big teams will drop points here - it will be easy for no team to come here and just take a win.

on pushing for a late winner…
I feel we played against two teams who are highly focused to defend. When you see other games you see they are open games. We played against two teams who were really focused on defending, defending, defending - and they did very well. I have seen other teams who go forward, they play and they open their game. After it is easy to score, but today it was a fight for 90 minutes. What is the most important thing is that you learn about your team and see they are capable of standing up. You could see we behaved like men who are ready for a fight. That is the most important thing at the moment.

on a relatively comfortable game against Stoke…
Yes, certainly defensively we had no major problem. They had one good chance in the second half when we lost the ball in midfield but apart from that we dealt very well with them in the air. They have six basketball players, size-wise! It is difficult on set pieces because we had plenty of corners but when you look at their back four and then the guy they brought in, Cameron, the midfielder, he is two metres tall! It's difficult to take advantage of set pieces against them.

on reports linking Tiote with Arsenal…
Tiote is a good player but he is not on his way to Arsenal.

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 26 Aug 2012