Press conference

'I have a responsibility. I know I can do better'


Unai Emery has admitted that he "can do better" after we drew 2-2 with Southampton on Saturday.

Our head coach faced the media after the match and discussed the performance, the confidence levels of the team and more.

Read on for a full transcript:

on the result...
Good evening. We are frustrated and we understand the supporters as well. We lost an opportunity to connect with our supporters because they helped us. We want, and we know, that here is the key. Here is the key to feel comfortable, to feel strong and take confidence. We didn't do that. The first half, we were drawing but it wasn't enough with how we were playing. The second half we started better, we changed. The best 20 minutes in all the season were in the second half, that moment. We created chances, we didn't score, but I was happy with that moment. That was our moment. I wanted to look at our players in that moment. Then they scored when we were better and we took some risks after that to equalise but we conceded some chances to score the third. We drew at the last moment but it's not enough. Really, we can be disappointed and the fans also, and me, with the result.

on Alex Lacazette not celebrating the equaliser...
Yes that's an example of how they felt. They felt the point was not enough. Our performance, individually and collectively, was about achieving the victory. Maybe to take confidence, the key was in the 20 minutes of the second half where we created three chances. Maybe if we scored, we could have connected better with our supporters. They helped us in 90 minutes but we didn't achieve that connection with a good game or good moments playing, or a good result. We started losing and we needed to come back for every moment in 90 minutes.

on how worried he is about the tense atmosphere...
I understand the supporters. They are now frustrated, disappointed and angry. The players feel the same. My job is to work, analyse and find a solution for how we can improve. I know the key is here to take confidence, to achieve the points, the good performances at home and then to take that away. The key is here with our supporters. I know that and the players also know that. Our target was to win this evening but above all, to connect. We didn't do that. We lost a very big opportunity and now we will analyse and work on a solution for the next matches.

on what needs to change...
One is confidence and that comes with a good result. To take that confidence, we need to play better, control the game better and improve our game plan. We didn't do that for 90 minutes. In the first half, we equalised but it wasn't enough. We needed to impose and to show we were better on the pitch in 45 minutes. We didn't do that. We changed in the second half and we achieved that in 20 or 25 minutes at the start of that second half, but then we were losing. We lost some confidence and we were frustrated on the pitch, but we tried to push. The supporters helped us and we drew at the end but it wasn't enough.

on the formation change from three to four at the back...
That's a decision I've made because I need to find a solution. We play with three centre backs to feel stronger defensively. But also because in the first half, we were better defensively. But it wasn't enough. We needed to attack more in the second half so I changed it. Then when we were attacking more, we had 20 or 25 minutes where we were better offensively but then defensively we lost a little bit of that balance and conceded more chances than we wanted. That is the issue. I need to work, I need to analyse, I need to find a solution. Today I tried that, starting with the centre backs, changing in the first half when we were drawing because we wanted to win. We wanted to achieve more risks to attack and to get more players in the attacking third. But then we struggled defensively then with their transition. Now we are going to analyse it and find solutions as to whether we are better with three or two centre backs, the balance, and then work out how we can be stronger defensively and offensively. We lost that balance. We had a strong start to the second half in the first 20 or 25 minutes, but then we lost that balance and defensively we struggled more than we needed. At the end we drew and it's not enough. We're frustrated and disappointed, so are the supporters. Now we are speaking in the dressing room, the coaches, the club, and we need to work and analyse to find a solution. We can be disappointed at the moment but we need to keep on moving for the next match, to prepare and improve on the issues.

on whether he's angry with the players...
Never. I never could be angry when the attitude is good and the attitude is good.

on his future...
Now my job is to analyse, to try to move on with confidence with the players. It's difficult but we need to move on in the next days. After analysing that match are going to play at home again on Thursday, prepare as well as possible. We know, and I know, that we need to connect with our supporters.

on whether he accepts his position is under threat...
The club are supporting me every day and also I have a responsibility. I know I can do better, I can take more performances with the players and I'm going to try to do that.

on Aubameyang, Lacazette and Pepe...
Last year we achieved a lot of good matches playing with Laca, Auba and Mesut Ozil. We started them all today playing against Southampton because we needed to take confidence. We used a different system because the players are ready to do that. It's not a problem with the system. First, it's to have confidence and connect with our supporters here, to get a good result. It's coming with that confidence. The players today, for example Lacazette scored, Aubameyang worked, I think Mesut Ozil worked for 90 minutes. If we scored a second goal in the second half at the beginning, I think maybe that moment was the key moment to take that confidence and connect with our supporters. We wanted to connect with them to be stronger and win that match. We didn't do that and at the end we drew. It's not enough but at the last moment we achieved that point. Now we need to be angry, also disappointed, but keep going ahead.

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