Press conference

'Dundalk have really good cohesion in their team'

Mikel Arteta has praised Dundalk's cohesion and organisation ahead of our Europa League clash at Emirates Stadium.

Our manager was asked about the Irish side in detail - and this is what he said:
on Dundalk and what they'll offer...
We've got some Irish staff here and there are a lot of positive things about them. From what I've seen they've got a really determined coach that has found a really good cohesion with the team. You can see in every reaction when they are playing, how united they are. They're really well organised, they make it really hard and they will be coming here with incredible passion. They're underdogs and that will give them a lot of energy and I expect them to be at full gas tomorrow, trying to beat us here.

on the story behind the appointment of Dundalk manager, Filippo Giovagnoli...
I think it's a great story and linking different backgrounds and different countries into that history is a good one to hear. I watched a long interview with him because I wanted to know who he is, what he is trying to do and what he is trying to express to his players. This is where I found out what happened and straight away he said he could feel that the players believed in what they were doing, which is everything that a coach wants. I think they have created a really good chemistry that has given them a big boost from last season. Big merit to them for the work that they are doing.

on the chances of an upset...
I don't know. This is football and I've seen a lot of things in this game, so I don't take anything for granted. I always expect the opponent to be at their best. After that I try to convince my players what we have to do to win the game and execute it in the best possible way. That's it and we'll see what happens tomorrow.
on Dundalk’s strengths and weaknesses…
As I’ve said, their strengths are the unity of the team and how hard they work together and how well they are organised. There are a few bits where they look really dangerous in certain contexts. Against us in certain situations it’s a little more complicated, but yes, if you allow any team time and space, they will create issues. They’re really strong on set-pieces as well and I’m sure they will have prepared them for tomorrow, so we will have to control the normal aspects we do every week.

on whether there are any players that he liked the look of…
I will highlight the team and the spirit that they have and how they competed, and in the game against Molde you could see straight away how much belief they have in what they do.

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