Press conference

Arteta on the draw, Sambi, Tomiyasu: every word

Mikel Arteta cut a frustrated figure when he faced the media after our goalless draw with Burnley on Sunday.

The boss was asked about our performance, Takehiro Tomiyasu's fitness, his plans for the rest of the transfer window and more.

Read on for a full transcript:

on Tomiyasu’s absence, and how serious his injury is…

Well, Tomiyasu had an injury and we didn’t have anybody to play in that position against Liverpool. He really wanted to push, he tried and he played the 90 minutes, and he felt it again. So he will be out for a couple of weeks.

on whether it’s crucial that he stays in England (during his injury)…

Right now he needs to recover, his only focus has to be to have the best possible treatment. To look after himself, and try to be available for us as quickly as he can.

on how long it will take for his injury to heal…

He will be out for a few weeks.

on where we struggled to break down the Burnley defence…

Well the way we started the game, it was slow and we didn’t play forward enough and didn’t have enough urgency. Probably because of Thursday, it could be one of the reasons. Afterwards we picked the game up and started to get better, and certainly the second half was completely different. We were much more dynamic, we had more penetration, we played forward and we had better positions to (threaten them) in behind and the width, in many situations. We created a number of situations, shots, crosses. But to win this match you need to have a different level of quality, and we lacked that today. With the amount of situations we generated, you need a spark, and someone has to win you the game, if you want to be on top.

on whether our attacking position at the end left us exposed on the counter…

It it’s one of the risks that you have, because the game becomes more unpredictable the moment you start to throw boys (up) there, and with the way Burnley play with all of their second-balls. Yes we had to maintain our discipline, but at the same time we had to risks because we wanted to win the game.

on if we need new signings to challenge for the top four...

It's what we planned, but the market is difficult, it's complicated. We knew that, but it's a lot to manage and we have to make the right decisions with players that we believe are going to really help us and try to bring in ones that can take us to the next level.

on if he expects incomings before the deadline...

Well, we are certainly trying, but I don't know if we're going to be able to do it. Let's see, it's not only our intention, but a lot of facts that are needed to happen.

on if our goal drought affects Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's future...

We have scored a lot of goals recently, but it's true in the last four games we haven't done it. Today, again, it's not about the situation you are able to create, but the quality of the execution and the number of shots that you need to put on target to beat teams like Burnley.

on if this was a missed opportunity to get into the top four...

It was a great chance and we wanted to take that opportunity after missing to get in that final, which was a disappointment because we really wanted to play there and today we had an opportunity to do it. I didn't see that desire right from the beginning, but I certainly saw it in the second half, but we lack that quality that you need to put the games to bed and to have that knife when you are there to do it, like we missed against Liverpool as well when we had them.

on if players should have been signed sooner in the window...

I think that's the dream of every manager, to have them in the team on the first day, but it isn't realistic and in this window as well, the history of this window, a lot of them happen right at the end.

on our plans in the mid-season break...

We're going to go away, we're going to have a training camp all together in a different environment, reunite, refocus and let's have a good go because there's still a lot to play for.

on where we're going for the training camp...

Dubai.

on the players looking tired at the end of the game...

I don't know, I saw them try right to the last minute. They're really tired, we know in the last four weeks that we had a really demanding and challenging situation because we didn't have enough players, some players have been sick, injured, trying to bring them back, trying to expose them onto pitches when they're not ready, but I cannot fault how they tried, they certainly need some days off, but then we need to go back again and bring players back and start to work and start winning matches.

on whether Aubameyang will go to Dubai...

We will see what the situation is.

on how important it is to get the right people in the door...

Players that come here have to be able to take us to the next level. We already have a level, and we want to see much better standards than we already have, and that is how we're going to recruit.

on Lokonga's performance...

I think he is growing, he is playing better and better. I think he had a really good game the other day against Liverpool, his understanding of the game, he is managing the physicality much better, he is maturing. It's a lot to ask. When we signed him, the expectation that we had for him in the first year was to start adapting but he has had to play many more minutes than we expected and the kid is trying his best, and I think he's doing pretty well.

on him being animated with the fourth official on the touchline...

It was about showing a bit of passion. Obviously we are animated and live in the game, they are part of the industry so I expect someone when we speak to them to show some emotion because they are part of this. We are not selling newspapers here, we are just being part of the game and when you talk to him that has to flow and that energy has to exist there because we are playing to win football matches.

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