Press conference

Arteta on… the draw, Ozil, Tierney and more


Mikel Arteta was left frustrated after our winning run was ended by a stalemate with Crystal Palace on Thursday night.

Afterwards, he faced the media and this is what he told them:

on how he sums up the game...

I am disappointed because we wanted to win the game but I think the draw is a fair result, because we lacked some presence and some quality in the final third to win tonight.

on the calls from the authorities for players to limit unnecessary body contact...

I don't know the answer to that question. What we can control and what we are trying really hard to do is to try to follow all the guidelines, all the rules but sometimes that becomes difficult because there are a lot of emotions involved in the game. Obviously, it's good to do fist bumping but there are 25 actions where we have to grab each other on every set-piece. We are being tested every three days and we are trying to do all the right things and sometimes it makes sense to be all the time demanding that but at sometimes there are things that are pretty complicated.

on whether Mesut Ozil is closer than ever to leaving the club…

Well, I don’t know how close he has been before. There are some conversations going with Edu and the club at the moment, but nothing concrete yet.

on Kieran Tierney’s injury…

We don’t know [how long he’ll be out for]. We’ll probably know more tomorrow after testing him and knowing more about the injury and how long he’s going to be out for. Certainly it was a big disappointment on the day of the match to lose him, but hopefully he can be with us very quickly.

on whether it was difficult to adjust our attacking plans after losing Tierney...

It is a challenge when you create a game plan for the day and just a few hours before the game he has to pull out. But we have other players to do it and they have to step in. Kieran’s progression over the last few months has been incredible and now it’s for another player to step in and do what he does.

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