Press conference

Emery on Liverpool, Guendouzi, Ozil: transcript

Emery

With two wins from two, Unai Emery is pleased with our start to the season - but knows we face our first major examination on Saturday.

Our head coach discussed the game against Liverpool, Mesut Ozil's return, Matteo Guendouzi's impact and more.

Get your third kit before the boys wear it on Saturday

Read on for a full transcript from his press conference:

on whether this weekend’s game will show where the team is at…
Good afternoon, it’s a big challenge. Each match is a big challenge and each match is for us to prepare best as possible. The idea is to continue creating in our way and style. We need to be strong and also we can recover some players to be fit. I think we are closer to achieving everyone being ready to play, but we need some more time. For Saturday we are in a good spirit and our players are ready to play with big ambition to do something important.

on if his team will need to be more reserved at Anfield…
It’s a big stadium with a big atmosphere and I want to play every match in our amazing stadium with our amazing supporters in our home. But we need to play away and face big teams with big supporters. I think the motivation for us is very big on Saturday. We are going to have some Arsenal supporters helping us and it’s a big challenge. It’s going to be a different game to Burnley because the team is different. They are going to demand different tactical issues, but we want to play and show how we are now. It’s a big test to show their capacity and our capacity.

on Xhaka and Ozil’s availability...
Tomorrow is the last training and we are going to decide tomorrow. Today they trained, but really, I need tomorrow to have the last training, to be really sure how we can be better there. I know some players need to be fit and to improve 100 per cent to be in their best fitness. But tomorrow is the day. Really I am positive with some players for Saturday but I don't want to decide today or to say to you today how we are because tomorrow can change.

on if Mesut is back from illness...
I think he needs to be fit and also he is training as normal with the team. I think this is the first way to achieve that fitness. After that, to help us with his capacity.

on what we will learn this weekend about the team...
We really are in a very good position but we only played two matches in the Premier League. We are going to play 38 in total, so really to be in this moment with the possibility on Saturday to achieve first position is amazing and a really big possibility. We know it's only the beginning but we can be positive and optimistic for that match and wishing to show our moment against  them, but knowing that it is going to be difficult but it is a very big challenge and a very big opportunity for us to do something.

on how he makes sure what happened last season doesn't happen again...
Each match, each moment, each season is different. We can use last year, two years ago, three years ago, four years ago. But really it's about our moment and this moment. Anfield is a big atmosphere with their supporters, they are a very good team and they advantage for us in their progress and in the last years. In Anfield they have one step more in feeling strong, but it's not for us, it's for all. We need to take our best performance and to go there with a good feeling and also thinking we can achieve that performance individually and collectively to be strong and to have our chances. We are looking forward to going there and showing that.

on whether Matteo Guendouzi will sign a new deal and how impressed he has been by him...
We have a lot of young players and they can develop a lot. We are going to help them, to push them and also they need to break different levels and achieve individually in their performance. We are here to help them and give them chances. Matteo is very young but he has talent and his talent is also to adapt to what we need or what is needed in the Premier League. It's also to be physically strong. We are working tactically and individually to improve, we are working with him on the videos and on the pitch and we are speaking to him because it's a big challenge for me, for our coaches and for him to achieve a big level here. He is in this process. Last year, for me he was very good in his process but he missed a lot to achieve in his career the big performances and big moments for him and to help us. But really I am very, very optimistic with him because he has this talent and I think we can also improve him on other things, like physically we are working with him in the gym, and mentally. He's a young player with potential who can now help us to achieve the best performances.

on issues of abuse on social media...
I have them because it's important to be closer to the supporters and the people, to give them information, individual and collective, from me and from the club, to be closer to them. The [social media] is you - [if you can’t] control it if you don’t use it positively, it can be negative. I only use it when I think it can give me some good information or help me in some opinion. But really, when people cannot control the social media, it’s not positive for us.

on VAR...
For me, VAR is positive. It's coming to help us, to help the referees and to be fair in different circumstances in one game. After this, I think it's also right to think to not stop the intensity and the rhythm in the matches and not to stop for a lot of minutes. At the moment, sometimes it’s going to be positive for us, sometimes it’s going to be negative. But really, now, in my mind, it's positive for everybody, for every team and for the Premier League to help them. Sometimes it's helping us, sometimes it's not helping us, but it's fair.

on Nicolas Pepe...
The most important thing is, like a person, to help him and his family to feel comfortable here. Now he is three weeks into working here with us. He didn't do the pre-season here but he’s progressively feeling better. For example, in the first match, he played 15 minutes in Newcastle, then he played 45 minutes against Burnley. I think his individual performances are progressively getting better. For Saturday, he is maybe ready to have more minutes. I am going to decide tomorrow, but really his progress has been positive and has been good for the team and for him. The most important piece of the adaptation is to help him to feel easy and be comfortable with us.