Press conference

Arteta on Palace, Aubameyang, Zaha: transcript

Mikel Arteta

Mikel Arteta was back in front of the media on Thursday as he sat down to discuss this weekend’s Premier League trip to Crystal Palace.

Our head coach was asked about the Eagles, stopping Wilfried Zaha, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's future and more.

Read on for a full transcript:

on how much difference a full week of training makes…
At least we had some time to train a few things that I wanted to start implementing. It is nice to have a few more players back, a few from injury, and a bigger group where we can be not just match, post-match, recovery, pre-match all the time. So I am pleased, and when the weather is like this, even better.

on the challenge of facing a Roy Hodgson team at Selhurst Park…
Every time I played there, I suffered. It was always tough. It is a very complicated stadium. He is a manager with incredible experience and what he is doing there, it is very impressive and it will be tough.

on the team news…
No news really, I don’t think we we will get anyone back in the squad, we have a few that are going to be 50/50 for the following game probably but not much news.

on how Hector Bellerin is…
Hector is a little bit better. He trained partially with the team today, but he’s still not there.

on what has changed since he took over…
The first thing I wanted to change was the energy around the team and around the club as well. It is slightly better than how it was, or much better I would say. Obviously the fact we are winning games helps, and as well what I am seeing at the training ground since the day I moved is much more like I want to see.

on what he can learn from Hodgson...
From Roy? Absolutely everything. It is incredible how he deals with situations. To be living with this level of pressure for such a long time, the way he handles it, the way he behaves himself, the way he puts himself across, how respected he is around all the players and clubs, is remarkable. So I have big admiration for him.

on Aubameyang talking about his love and commitment to the club...
I was very pleased to read those comments. He knows exactly what I think about him and obviously he's a massive player for us. But at the moment we're in the middle of the season and we haven't discussed anything further on that at the club.

on whether he would intend to have talks at the end of the season...
My intention is to keep Auba obviously because I know that if we keep Auba with us, we're going to be stronger and closer to winning football matches. That's the only thing.

on whether he's confident Auba would stay...
I don't know, we haven't discussed that. But I'm confident that he's very happy here because that's what he said in the media.

on whether there will be any significant investment this month...
I don't know, I'm not expecting big things. I'm expecting big things from the players I have at the moment, the players that are recovering from injuries. That's the biggest expectations from my side, they're there. If we can find something to help us go through the season in a more balanced way in certain areas, and is helpful, we'll look at the options.

on whether we're actively looking to strengthen...
Yeah, we always have to be looking because obviously we have some bad injuries for players who are going to be out for a long time. We have to see if we can find options there.

on a potential loan departure for Emile Smith Rowe...
We are assessing the situation with three of them [young players]. We are evaluating all the offers that they have from different clubs, where would suit them more and if it's the right time for them to make that step. In the next few days, we will tell you exactly what will happen.

on whether the other two youngsters are Tyreece John-Jules and Eddie Nketiah...
Yeah. And with Eddie it's the same situation. I sat down with him and was very impressed with him. I think it was a great challenge for him to work in that environment in Leeds. I think he's become a much better player, a much more competitive player. Then the decision to make now is whether it's better to send him out for another five months to realise his potential and have him ready for next season, or keep him here. It's something we have to discuss in the next few days.

on whether we'll start as slowly at Palace as we did against Leeds...
I hope not! They haven't started slow this morning and I hope it's not the case.

on what the reaction in training was like over the following few days...
Very good. To be fair, they've been training really, really well. The spirit is up, the level of confidence is good and they seem in a good place.

on whether he's surprised at how many penalties Palace have had against Arsenal...
One of the things to be aware of, 100 per cent. We know Wilf and the type of talent he is. When he gets isolated in one-on-one situations, we know what he can do. Of course it will be part of the gameplan.

on whether he'd like to have Wilfried Zaha...
I think he's a terrific player and I think the impact he's had in the Premier League in the last few years has been phenomenal. His ability to create chances on his own is unique.

on Martinelli and whether he'll miss any league games for Brazil U-23 duty...
Well, in the middle of the season it's never ideal for players to go to that type of tournament. We'll discuss with the club whether there's an obligation, whether that's something that the player really wants to go to and we'll make a decision on that.

on if it's time for us to put a run of form together before we play Chelsea...
It's the only option we have. We want to have the aspiration to reach that, we need a lot of games in a truck and we have to start now.

on if he thinks we have to sell to buy in this window...
We're not thinking to sell. There's nothing concrete at the moment on the table, as I said, I'm focusing on the players we have now and this transfer window is a little bit tricky and things might come at the end. But I don't know which way.

 

 

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