Interview

Koscielny on the penalty and the clean sheet

Laurent Koscielny was in the right place at the right time again and again on Sunday.

Standing strong to block goalbound shots, climbing high to get his head on Burnley’s dangerous crosses and bringing the ball calmly out of defence, it was an assured, influential display from our captain.

Laurent faced the media straight after the final whistle. Here’s what he said:

on the penalty decision…
I don’t know. I was so far away. The referee made a decision and we need to respect that. Two weeks ago at Manchester City, I think it was offside and they scored. It’s like this in football. Sometimes they make some mistakes. It’s difficult for the ref to see all the action. Today we are happy because we have the three points. In the second half, we played well with the ball, with more movement and combinations with two or three players. You are always happy if you score a late goal, and we have the three points.

on how significant the win is…
It was a difficult game. They had the same points as us and play very direct football. They cross very well and up front they have some players who can score headers, so it was very difficult. They’ve only conceded two goals at home before, so we knew it was a difficult game here for us to get the three points. We are very happy because Burnley played well in the first half and put lots of pressure on us. We stayed focused on our defensive job to keep the clean sheet, so we are very happy.

on how satisfying it is to keep back-to-back clean sheets…
It’s always important for a defender. It’s not just the back three or the back five, though. When we play like this, we defend together and help our team-mates. Like we did last week, it’s easier for everyone on the pitch when we work together and then afterwards we have the quality to get forward and create opportunities to score. We need to keep this in our heads and continue like this.