Arsène Wenger faced the media after the win over Brighton & Hove Albion on Sunday. You can read a full transcript of what he had to say below:
on the win… I believe our performance was good and there was room to score more goals with the chances we created. Overall what you want first is the quality of the performance and to go through. They had two shots on target. When you play away from home and the other team had two shots on target - overall I think we produced the performance I expected.
on whether Arsenal are favourites for the FA Cup now… With yesterday’s results you would be a bit cautious. The cup is the cup - what you want is to focus on the next round to go through. We have a good experience from last season to know that every round is difficult. The most difficult games were not especially the expected ones last season, so let’s wait for the draw. Of course we’ll fight and we want to retain our cup but there’s too long to go to say [that Arsenal are favourites].
on Gabriel Paulista… It’s on the line and I think we’ll get over the line tonight and tomorrow.
on whether Arsenal have the most momentum in the top six… We have a good momentum but let’s keep the urgency level very high and we know how quickly the momentum can die in football if your quality drops a little bit. We have a good opportunity to finish well this season so we have to show that we can compete in every single game now and earn our right to win the games.
on whether yesterday’s results give Arsenal a better opportunity… I think the results yesterday was a bit of a subconscious warning for us. It wakes you up a bit and you think, ‘okay it’s a Championship team’ but you know that the players in lower-level teams are prepared now - they come out of the academies, do not make it in the Premier League but they are not far from it. They can maintain the pace for 90 minutes and in these kinds of ties they never give up. Even if you look in League One, you look at the games and the teams play good football. If you’re not ready, you can lose.
on whether he was confident after seeing the results… I thought that showed our game would be difficult. The first shock was that I didn’t believe it. I checked the result twice and then I thought, ‘we are in a fight for tomorrow’s game as well’.
on retaining the FA Cup… I’m on the other side of the game. You always want to know what will happen and I always have to stop people from thinking what will happen because nobody really knows. We will be one of the favourites because I think Manchester United could go through and some other Premier League teams will go through. We’ll be amongst them but we cannot predict who will win it.
on attacking options… At this stage of the season [Arsenal have] never [had such good attacking options]. Last year we lost many players in January and this year they’ve come back because they were out earlier.
on having fresh players… Yes [it will help].
on Theo Walcott… For a first game it was encouraging. Ozil as well - maybe they dropped a little bit physically in the second half but overall they were ready.
on Rosicky… He was wonderful. A player we all love. If you love football, you love Rosicky. On top of that he’s a fantastic character, scored and I’m very pleased for him.
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