Press conference

Arteta - It's a strong statement from the team

Mikel Arteta

After back-to-back home wins against Southampton and West Ham, we ended an excellent week with a 4-1 win away to Leeds United.

It was our first victory on the road since beating Leicester at the end of October, and consolidated our place in the top four of the Premier League going in to Christmas.
 
It was another game in which our front players particularly shone, and the boss reserved special praise for Martin Odegaard, who created five chances during his 85 minutes on the pitch.
 
Here's what he said to the press after the game.
 
on the result...
I am very, very happy with the performance and the result, the week that we had and the direction that this team is moving forwards in.
 
on taking advantage of a weakened Leeds side...
Yes. It's always very difficult to play against them when you look at any game that they've played. Obviously, at the Etihad, it was a different story but when they played at Stamford Bridge... Opponents they play this season know the game that they are going to face. It wasn't any different [today]. They never gave up in the second half and it's a team that I really like and I'm pleased because it's not easy to play the way that we have done today, in this atmosphere and against this opponent, so I think it was a very strong statement from the team.
 
on if he'd rather have more points or more games in hand at this stage...
The points, now we have them. The rest they have to have them but we know that now we are going to play like this [with disruption] and it's part of the league now.
 
on if they've put down a marker in the race for the top four...
We are there now, but it's still a long, long season to go ahead with a lot of unpredictable things probably that are going to happen, but we are there. We want to continue that and we want to continue improving and playing better and better and then let's see where we get.
 
on similarities between Martin Odegaard and David Silva...
That's a big name. My opinion is David is the best I've seen playing between the lines for the last 20 years. Martin has got a tremendous quality and the capacity to unlock situations and put players through to generate open spaces in tight areas. I'm really happy and now he's improving in his goal threat as well so we have a big player there that is very willing to become one of the best, but it's still very early.

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