Arteta on the key moments of our season - so far

arteta ics

As the Premier League title race goes down to the wire, Mikel Arteta took some time to reflect on the season so far with two big games to go. 

He took us through the whole season step-by-step to reveal the key moments in the campaign that have shaped the squad, and put us within touching distance of a first championship success in 20 years.

Pre-season preparations and predictions

mikel pre season

“The players were recharged, the staff were excited, the club was in a good place and it was a good vibe. My message was we had to update and upgrade and be better than the season before. There were so many positives and learnings from last season and I want to be better.

“I would say that the fun has to be in trying to win, within that journey. You have to find space and perspective and it has to be driven. We are so lucky that we are fighting to win major trophies. The outcome is going to be decided by small details but with that journey you have to really embrace and enjoy the moment.”

Taking on our title rivals

Mikel man city

“We are improving. When you look at the numbers in position with the top teams, it’s really positive. You need that - those head-to-head games become super important as you can see in the league table and it means that we are improving.

“It’s a challenge but at the same time, it’s very inspiring. When you have two of the best managers in the world [Guardiola and Klopp] with two huge clubs, competing and facing them in their eyes and willing to be better than them, you learn from it. You challenge yourself and seek excellence because it’s the only way to try to beat them.”

How we overcame our winter blues

The Arsenal squad running out in Dubai

“The power of the sun in Dubai! That’s what the people are saying. If they believe it, so be it. It was a sensational time for us, it was a great camp, we really enjoyed it, we trained hard and we had moments as well to reconnect with who we are and what is important for us to win football matches. It was a big breath of fresh air and it gave us big power.

“Honestly, it sounds boring, but it’s going day by day and making sure that we do every single day every single task in the best possible way, with the same energy, with the same freedom and letting players and staff flow as well. They are fully committed, they really want to win, you see a different competitive edge in a lot of the players, you see that around the club as well and what it takes to win.”

Admiring our beautiful football

arteta celeb

“My perspective is probably different the way I’m looking at the game. Obviously I do like a lot of the things that we do. Sometimes coaches focus more on the things that we did not do in that moment or things that can happen that we’re not properly identifying but it’s a joy to work with these players and be in this journey. As a spectator at the Emirates, I enjoy the atmosphere and really feel part of that.

“First of all it’s about finding and trying to transmit the values of this football club, our identity and the way we want to play football to our people and that they feel that they belong to that. We describe this as unity and something very powerful that we needed to become the great club that we are again.”

Derby day delight

Gabriel Spurs

“First of all, you have to give credit to the opponent. You want to try to take the game to a place that is convenient for us and is going to give us the chance to win it. Sometimes the momentum shifts and something happens, it can be a mistake or something the opponent has done really well and then you have to navigate that when the emotions change and doubts can come into your brain. The team is dealing with that much better.”

Two games to go

Mikel Arteta in training

“We are right in it with two games to go. We need to do what we have to do. We need to go to Old Trafford and perform really well to earn the right to win the game, and if we do that we’re going to be another step closer, but there’s still a lot to do.

“I’m just in a state at the moment where I just think how I have to feel right now to be in the best place to beat Manchester United. I’m really enjoying the journey to win. We weren’t in this position for many years and we are right now and I think it’s our duty, our obligation, to really enjoy it, be the best we can be and see where it takes us.”

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