Press conference

Every word from Mikel's post-Southampton presser

Mikel Arteta during the game against Southampton

Not long after seeing his side net two late goals to clinch a 3-3 draw against Southampton at Emirates Stadium, Mikel Arteta was in front of the media for his post-match press conference.

He was asked questions about the impact the result has on the title race, what he felt went wrong and about various individual displays, as well as much more.

Here is everything he had to say:

on how he feels about the result: 
Well at the end, empty obviously, because it was a very emotional game and I’m disappointed because we didn’t get the three points. After all that happened in the game I still believe that we deserved it, but we have to look in the mirror because we gave three really easy goals away and when you do that it’s extremely difficult to win in this league.
on whether it’s difficult to tell the players that it’s still in our hands if we beat Manchester City:
They want it so much. For me personally, what I’ve experienced with not only the players but the staff and our supporters, it was incredible and I know how difficult it is. After one minute we made a big mistake to concede and then we made another mistake and it was 2-0. 

You’re trying to just play and play and play against a team that is doing what they have to do because of where they are ,and after the first time they go past the halfway line they scored a third one and then it’s a big question mark of what you do as a team and what you do as an individual. 

The response of the players, I cannot love them more, honestly. It is a joy to coach them and it is a joy to be a part of this club and to experience what I have experienced with this team. At the end the magic moment was there to be taken, we had two big chances at 3-3 to score but today it didn’t happen unfortunately.
on whether it’s difficult to keep his players’ feet on the ground:
They are and we have talked about that. It’s about playing the game, not the occasion. We started to play the game and this happens because it happens in football and it happens in critical moments. What can you do? 

But then they tried to keep playing, playing, playing and then you see what you saw on that pitch and the amount of situations and chances, and what they are able to transmit to the crowd to get where we were. At the end it’s tough because you can see them on the floor and you have to leave them. I think everybody has to disconnect tonight, digest it and tomorrow start to think what is the best way to go to Manchester to beat them.
on whether it’s down to individual or collective mistakes today:
Today it’s clear.
on whether there are themes behind our past three results:
When we win I give explanations. When we draw I try to give you the right explanation. Today is clear. You cannot concede three goals in the way that we did and expect to win games in the Premier League unless you make a miracle or a performance like we did in the last 15 minutes, then you still have the chance to win it.

on what we’ve gained from today:
Well hopefully more belief. At the end of the day, when you are able to do what they’ve done, against the odds in a really difficult context, you have to believe in what you can do. Today is tough, just to think what is happening today, because now we are focusing on what just happened and what we’ve been through.
on whether his players should embrace the pressure:
Absolutely, enjoy it. To enjoy the moment we are in, to enjoy the position we are in and to play every single ball with that emotion and that purpose, which is what I see every day in what they do.
on Martinelli scoring 15 Premier League goals:
You’re not in the position that we’re in, if individually we don’t have the players performing consistently throughout the season, and for sure, Gabi is one of them.
on how we can regain control in our performances:
It was impossible today after one minute with what we’ve done, but you want to take the game to a lot of periods, especially after 25 minutes and after what happened in the second half in the last 30, but you have to go through the other moments. We have to navigate through that and do better than what we have done.
on how we will approach the Manchester City game:
I don’t see the lack of confidence when a team is able to do that [what we did tonight]. Normally the players start to hide in certain moments – I didn’t see a single player do that, they were willing to take risks, to take the initiative. 

That’s why we created the chances we created, that’s why we got back to 3-3 from 3-1 and should have won the game. So, the confidence is there, it’s those moments that we need to cut back. At this level, we cannot give away the goals that we have given. It’s as simple as that.
on Leandro Trossard’s impact and whether he deserves to start:
He does everything. It’s about how you play everybody together and in every phase of play, he’s with the right balance as well without losing the structure and flow of the team. But when he came on, for sure he looked really good again.
on whether it was a difficult match for Fabio Vieira:
It was a difficult match for a lot of players but for Fabio, he hasn’t played enough minutes. He had good periods but the way the game starts as well, instead of going one or two-nil up, and everything goes in your favour, it starts to go in a much more difficult way. That doesn’t help.
on whether he can understand why City are considered favourites:
We cannot control that.

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