Press conference

Every word from Mikel's post-Liverpool presser

Mikel Arteta

It was an evening to remember at Emirates Stadium on Sunday. We edged Liverpool 3-2 in an intense, action packed encounter, sending us back to the top of the Premier League.

In his post-match press conference Mikel Arteta was asked about the atmosphere, Gabriel Martinelli’s performance, his ambitions for the team and more.

Read on for a full transcript below. 

on full-time celebrations…
Just thank you so much to the boys and our supporters for experiencing an afternoon like this, our profession, and why we are here. I really enjoyed it. Especially the way we won.

on the atmosphere inside the Emirates…
I’ve never seen it like this, you cannot imagine how much it helps the players, how much belief it gives, how much confidence, and support. It’s one of the nicest things we’ve done since we are together here, to unite everybody and feel like you go here and you’re going to have some experience and it’s great

on keeping the players motivated…
Doing what we do every single day, and understanding that hopefully, they believe more and they have more confidence that we can play and compete at this level and then win which is the most important thing. Stay humble and tomorrow be ready for the training session and all the things we have to get better but with this enthusiasm, and empathy between them to try to be a better team.

on Martinelli’s performance…
He’s a great player, I think today he had an outstanding performance against a top defender, against a top team and he made a difference in the game as well as the other players and that’s the next level to step up in these games and actually make things happen to win it

on Martinelli’s contract situation…
We don’t get dragged out about a performance, Gabi doesn’t have to show me whether he plays well or not today. What he deserves is clear, his hunger, his determination, his love for this game and you don’t know where he is going to reach, he’s always asking and willing for more.

on Tomiyasu’s performance…
Very good, and that’s what we hoped he would do and he exactly did that, to think of doing that against Salah and actually do it is a very different story. He’s done it incredibly well, especially after playing on Thursday and what he’s been through in the last few weeks.

on what is possible for this Arsenal team…
At the moment, enjoy where we are and again have even more determination to believe that we can play at that level, only when we go at that rhythm and play with courage that we played the second half and go step by step

on whether he believes Arsenal can beat anyone…
I think on the day we play at our best, we have a chance but winning a football match is dictated by a lot of things that you have to control, and actually, you have to do it on the pitch, that is a different story.

on the manner of the win against Liverpool…
The feeling of winning it’s so powerful and so meaningful for me because I saw a team that I feel I really identify with, the personality they show in difficult moments, how they stick to what they have to do, and at the same time they believe they have the courage and the free mind to just go for it and attack them and put them under pressure.

on not settling for a draw…
That’s the nature of our team, the way we encourage them to play and if you can win, win.

on Gabriel Jesus suffering a head injury…
I don’t know, I haven’t been with the doctor yet, I’m sure they are checking him, he seemed ok after the game, I don’t know actually what happened but we’ll assess how well he is.

on whether Arsenal are in a title race…
I don’t know from me, I’m really happy where we are, and let’s try to continue to be there

on Saka’s confidence taking penalties…
That was a difficult moment that has an incredible learning curve for him in his career and experience, he took it and everybody around him helped him to do that starting with the England national team, Gareth and everybody how supported he was, and then the boy didn’t hesitate to continue because he believes he can take them under pressure and he really enjoys the responsibility.

on whether the win over Liverpool is his best as Arsenal manager…
I don’t know, but I’m really, really happy today.

on what Jurgen Klopp said to him at full-time…
He said congratulations, we shake hands and we move on, normally we don’t have time to discuss the game.

on what referee Michael Oliver said to him and Klopp on the touchline…
Yeah, it was an incident that happened but whatever happens on that pitch, stays on that pitch.

on Odegaard’s performance…
Great, the way he put the ball to Martinelli in the first minute of the football match to make the game in our favour, it was great, I’m really pleased with the way Martin is playing.

on why he substituted Odegaard…
Because I have five subs and I can make those decisions.

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