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Leno - The reason for our defensive improvement

Bernd Leno was a happy man after Saturday's Premier League game against Everton.

Not only did our No 1 keep his third clean sheet of the season, he also didn't have to make a single save during our goalless draw at Goodison Park.
 
So why does Leno think we were much better defensively against the Toffees?
 
"It was completely different to other games, but you can see only with intensity, with mentality, we didn’t concede a goal," he said.
 
"We didn’t let them have chances, like Freddie said and the new manager. I think the lineup was very good because everybody was fighting for the team and we showed great mentality. Unfortunately we didn’t score, but I think at the end of the day we can be happy with our performance and especially with our mentality.
 
"We didn’t let them have any transitions like in the other games. The distances [between our defenders and their attackers] were much closer and I think this is the only way you can play, because the Premier League is too strong to have one, two or three players that don’t defend. This is the only way we can play and we can be successful."

02:02

Everton (a) - Bitesize

Leno is now targeting similar defensive performances under Mikel Arteta, and says the team can't wait to get to work with the new head coach.
 
"He didn’t speak too much about quality or about tactics, he just said he wants to see players who run, who support their team-mates, who defend the goal or in general play as a team,” Leno explained. “We understood the message against Everton.
 
"We have to show mentality, we have to play good football and I think then we will have opportunities. When we just speak about tactics or quality or what was in the past, it doesn’t matter. I think the only way is that we work hard, that we get back our strong mentality and then I think I am confident we can reach our target."

 

 

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