Press conference

Arteta on… team news, Martinelli and Smith Rowe

Having scored three away goals in Athens last week, we're favourites to progress from our Europa League last-16 clash with Olympiacos.

So how is Mikel Arteta planning on rotating his squad for Thursday’s return leg in London? Who could come into contention and who could take a well-earned rest?

This is what our manager told the media about a whole host of players:

on the latest team news…
Everyone is more or less okay. We have a few doubts but hopefully everyone will be involved in the squad.

on a chance to give some players minutes…
It's a good time for everybody, it is a really important game for us, nothing has been decided - there is still another 90 minutes at least to play for and we know it is going to be tough and everyone has to be ready. We have the opportunity to make changes, we have five substitutions so we will decide the best team to try to beat them.

on why Martinelli hasn't been playing…
No, if anything it's my fault, he has done everything perfect, he trains incredibly well every day, his attitude cannot be any better, he is disappointed he is not playing more obviously and I have spoken to him, but he needs to be a little bit patient. He had some minutes, he had some games as well and it's true the competition for the front positions is very tough but he needs to be patient and he will get his chance.

on the latest with Aubameyang…
We talked, everything has been resolved in a really positive way so we move forward.

on whether it's a given he will come back into the team…
No, everybody has to obviously perform at the highest level to earn their place in the team, there is no exception there and we will try to put a really competitive team out tomorrow to try to win again.

on whether Emile Smith Rowe may be somebody we rest...
It's true that we have some players with some significant loads there, but our priority now is to win these next two games and then whatever happens with international duty. If anything, they will have to adapt to what we want. We're not going to do it the opposite way around because we are the ones that have to look after our players here every day. But at the end, we're the ones who pay our players so if anybody has to adapt, that's the national teams and not us.

on what the latest is on Bukayo Saka's availability...
He was doing another test and obviously he felt something muscular. But he's been much, much better and they've both been really well. So we'll make the decision this afternoon on what we'll do.

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