Arsene Wenger faced the media after the Stoke City win on Sunday. You can read a full transcript of what he had to say below:
on the victory…We moved well without the ball and moved the ball well, which is the basis of our game. Overall, we created chances, were mobile and the speed of our game created problems for Stoke. We took advantage of that.
on whether Alexis keeps getting better…The better the team plays, the more he is involved in the game because we attacked a lot. We had a very offensive team today and he’s confident. He’s another - like Giroud - and we can be direct with him, you can run at people a bit more, so there’s a good combination offensively.
on his performance…when you play at home - our pitch is perfect even in winter - you can move the ball well when you have so many technical players on the pitch. It is an advantage for us. What was important for me is that we kept a good concentration to play the game how we want to play and also that we kept a clean sheet at the back. Overall, I must say that everybody played very well. The only negative today is that we lost another experienced defender with a dislocated shoulder. That gives us a problem because we are already short of experienced players at the back.
on Arnautovic’s push on Debuchy…It didn’t look bad from our side. I have to watch it again.
on matching a physical side…I watched the game against Stoke that we played over there. It’s difficult to say you played well when you concede three goals, but going forward we always looked dangerous. We missed the start of the game there and we paid for it. Today, from the first minute, we played at a good pace, put them on the back foot and that was the difference.
on Debuchy’s injury…He has a dislocated shoulder. It’s difficult - you need a diagnosis from a specialist. We don’t know yet but he will certainly not play next week. Kieran Gibbs still has an inflamed ankle. The test yesterday told us it didn’t work.
on whether that influences transfers…Not so much because we were in the market anyway. Monreal and Debuchy can play centre back, but if Gibbs is not here Monreal cannot play centre back and if Debuchy is not here he cannot play centre back. This is a position where we are short.
on Chambers…Chambers was sick. I took him with the team but I decided at the last minute to leave him out of the squad because he’s been sick in the last two days.
on whether any of the challenges upset him…I haven’t seen the Monreal challenge. I think Crouch used his arms quite well at Stoke but I haven’t seen that challenge today. It was not a dirty game and I think we kept it clean because we moved very well and we didn’t give them any opportunity - we moved the ball so quickly that we didn’t give them an opportunity to get in too many physical challenges.
on mixed success against Stoke home and away…They are different as well. You forget sometimes that the opponent is different sometimes when they come to the Emirates. They are less confident than when they play at Stoke and we are maybe less confident at Stoke than we are here.
on how Szczesny felt after being dropped…I don’t know. You know how you can take a decision.
on whether Ospina will keep his place…I haven’t made a decision yet. It was a decision for today’s game. Szczesny is our No 1 competing with Ospina and Martinez - that’s our job.
on why he dropped Szczesny…I do not want to talk too much about that because the more I talk, the less I inform you.
on whether it was disciplinary…No. Honestly, no.
on Arsenal having the best passing accuracy in the final third…It’s one aspect of the game that is very positive because it shows that we have offensive potential. Football is a game where you have to be realistic as well because we have to stop conceding goals and that’s why today hopefully will improve our defenders’ confidence. We have another big game next week and we want to combine being dangerous going forward and being tight at the back. The defenders came in very happy today because they didn’t concede a goal. Our last away game at Southampton, we were not at the level.
on how long it will be before Mesut Ozil is back to full fitness…He’s fit. He lacks match fitness, he’s fit physically. It’s getting used to contact again. It will take two to three more weeks.
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