'Mikel said we had to run like wolves!'

Emi Martinez
Emi Martinez

What was behind our second-half improvement against Leeds? According to Emi Martinez, it was because we "showed our animal side".

The Championship team were well on top going into the interval, but some harsh words from Mikel Arteta changed things completely.

This is what Martinez told the media after the game:

on the match…
It was tough for us we should have been one or two-nil down, but we held them well and in the second half we did an incredible performance and we deserved to win. 

on the mentality of the team…
If you thought it was going to be an easy game, you’d be so wrong. They fight like animals, and they did. In the first 35 minutes, they were winning every single thing but we talked at half-time about the things we could improve and in the second half we were amazing. 

on the second-half performance…
We knew that if we didn’t change, we lose the game and we’d be out. We could not afford to do that especially in front of our home support. We are delighted with the win and we got Bournemouth away [in the next round] which is another tough game but we’re more than prepared. It’s two wins in a row so we start building the confidence back. 

on the fourth-round tie against Bournemouth…
Of course it’s another tough game, we saw the draw and thought, ‘It’s another good one.’ If we played like we did in the second half we can beat anyone. 

on the team’s start to the game…
I think they were winning every 50/50 and they were just getting the ball back very soon. They were pressing really hard and it was very difficult to get out how we did in training but in the second half, the manager said, ‘If we don't win 50/50s, we are going to lose the game.’ The lads went out there and, the gaffer says we need to ‘run like a wolf’ and have that animal side to us. I thought we did really well, we ran like we should have from the first minute. We’re delighted for the win and we move on. 

on Arteta’s words at half-time…
He was really angry but that’s what we need. We can’t switch off after a good win against Manchester United and I think we did in the first five minutes, we did switch off and that shouldn’t happen especially at home. 

on the difference in performances against Manchester United and here…
It’s difficult to explain because maybe we didn’t expect them to be so aggressive in the first five minutes but at half-time we knew how they played and in the second half we played our game. I think we did pretty well and we scored two good goals against Manchester United. 

on his role in the team…
Whenever they give me a game I try to keep a clean sheet and give the back four confidence with the goalkeeper behind them. There is competition between me and Bernd, we’re both young and I just want to play games and try to do my best in the cup competitions.

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