|Desc||Mikel Arteta is not the most spectacular player but has been a superb servant at Arsenal. When he arrived in 2011, he was tasked with stabilising a midfield rocking from the departure of Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri. In 2012/13 he has regularly captained the team, emerging as one of the squad’s true leaders|
|Org||Spanish National Team|
|Club as Coach||Arsenal FC|
|Manchester City [Pep Guardiola’s assistant]|
|Club as Player||Arsenal FC|
2019 09 20 Retrieve
[Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has said he is ‘pretty sure’ that current assistant Mikel Arteta will succeed him in the future] I’m pretty sure [he’ll succeed me]. He will have success. Sooner or later it’s going to happen (Arteta becoming a manager). He’s a young, young manager. He has experience already, handling big players and big teams. He’s got an incredible work ethic. He has a special talent to analyse what happens and to find solutions. We talk a lot about what he believes and how he feels. He was a holding-midfielder too and I think he reads the situations. The best [midfielders] play thinking about what the team needs in every single moment. He was a master of that. When he was able to see what was needed on the pitch, when you’re off the pitch it’s easier
[Guardiola has praised Arteta’s character, saying that he understands how to command a dressing room] He’s a guy who’s so happy when we win but also suffers a lot when we don’t. He’s an incredible person, an incredible human being, with incredible values about the dressing room and what it means to be together. He’s already an incredible, incredible manager. He will have incredible success in the future
2019 10 16 Retrieve
[Manchester City assistant Mikel Arteta says that midfielder Phil Foden has limitless potential] His potential is limitless. He is going to set his own limits. The most important thing is that, as a club and around the team, we have created a really healthy, inspiring and challenging environment. That’s exactly what he needs. The door is open. We have a manager who trusts in young players and he’s going to get opportunities. With that type of environment, to grow and to always be going in the right direction is the most important thing. I think he’ll be very successful
[While he does possess David Silva’s ability to create, Arteta says its the mental side of Foden’s game that has impressed him most] For me, his best attribute is his passion for the game. How much he wants to learn and what he’s able to do to improve. Of course, he’s got the skills and physical ability and he’s got a very good coach and very good team-mates who are going to help him. His mentality and passion to succeed is what is going to make him one of the best
2019 12 17 Retrieve
[Back in 2014, Arteta gave a fascinating insight into how he would approach management] My philosophy will be clear. I will have everyone 120 per cent committed, that’s the first thing. If not, you don’t play for me. When it’s time to work it’s time to work, and when it’s time to have fun then I’m the first one to do it, but that commitment is vital. Then I want the football to be expressive, entertaining. I cannot have a concept of football where everything is based on the opposition. We have to dictate the game, we have to be the ones taking the initiative, and we have to entertain the people coming to watch us. I’m 100% convinced of those things, and I think I could do it
2019 12 18 Retrieve
[Arteta set to be named new Arsenal head coach] He’s talking with Arsenal and I don’t know what will happen and when but Mikel is an incredible person. We were so smart to pick him up and now the others want him I’m not surprised. He’s a good manager, that’s why he’s done well with us. He’s an adult, he can make up his own mind about what he wants to do. I was aware of the meeting with on Sunday night. Mikel has been very honest with me all through this situation but for now he’s still a member of the City staff and part of our group
2019 12 20 Retrieve
[Arsenal appoint Mikel Arteta as new head coach] This is a huge honour. Arsenal is one of the biggest clubs in the world. We need to be competing for the top trophies in the game and that’s been made very clear to me in my discussions with Stan and Josh Kroenke, and the senior people from the club. We all know there is a lot of work to be done to achieve that but I am confident we’ll do it. I’m realistic enough to know it won’t happen overnight but the current squad has plenty of talent and there is a great pipeline of young players coming through from the academy
2019 12 20b Retrieve
[Arsenal’s new boss Mikel Arteta has claimed being ruthless and consistent is what has made Pep Guardiola such a successful manager] What I’ve learned mostly is you have to be ruthless, consistent and fit every day the culture of the club to have a winning mentality. To sustain it is even harder, so every day is important, every act is important, every word of the organisation is important. [Pep’s] work rate is incredible. How inspirational he is to people is incredible, but to me the secret is the players and staff have to believe what you deliver. You have to be able to transmit it and then people will buy into that. When you do that, you have a team, everyone is united, and we will be strong
[The former midfielder insists his relationship with Guardiola and City remains intact] The relationship between him and me is incredibly good. Obviously, he was sad, the timing wasn’t the best for him, but he understood. He knows how I’ve been growing and the needs that I had, emotionally, the ambitions that I had. If I had admiration for him before, after working with him, I could not explain how much of a nice person he is and what a professional he is. The way he reacted, he knew that I was suffering, because I was in a moment where [City] needed me as well, so I felt in that sense sad, but he has been so supportive. The relationship could not be any better. I said goodbye yesterday to all the staff, the players. I cried, because they’ve been my family for three and a half years, and we had incredible moments. We had a dream to do something in England with Pep that people said was impossible. ‘The Premier League, you will get bullied’. We did it, in the way we wanted. It was so fulfilling, to share that moment of our lives
2019 12 20c Retrieve
[New Arsenal boss Arteta reveals board have made it ‘very clear’ they want him to compete for trophies] This is a huge honour. Arsenal is one of the biggest clubs in the world. We need to be competing for the top trophies in the game and that’s been made very clear to me in my discussions with Stan and Josh Kroenke, and the senior people from the club. We all know there is a lot of work to be done to achieve that but I am confident we’ll do it. I’m realistic enough to know it won’t happen overnight but the current squad has plenty of talent and there is a great pipeline of young players coming through from the academy
2019 12 20d Retrieve
[Arteta must show the big names who’s boss and unite the Arsenal fanbase] We all know there is a lot of work to be done to achieve that but I am confident we’ll do it. I’m realistic enough to know it won’t happen overnight but the current squad has plenty of talent and there is a great pipeline of young players coming through from the academy
2019 12 20e Retrieve
[Arsenal new boss Mikel Arteta says Mesut Ozil is a massive player for Arsenal] He is a massive player for this club. What I want is to understand how they are feeling and what they need. You have to understand it. When I understand them, I can take the excuses out of them and focus on the things that are relevant and have an impact for the team on and off the pitch. He is a massive player. I know, when he ticks, what he can bring to the team
[Arteta told his new players they must follow his philosophy and take responsibility] I have my ideas that I would like to keep for myself because I have to corroborate them when I see the players act, behave, live together. I want to do things my way but convince everybody it is the right way to live better. Everybody has to respect each other, first of all, and I want people accountable for what I am asking them to do. I don’t want people hiding, I want people to take responsibility for their jobs and I want people who deliver passion and energy for the football club. Anyone who doesn’t buy into this is not good enough for this environment or this culture. There are things to change, for sure, because they are not performing at the level we expect them to, but I have to know what’s happening. I need to understand how they feel. If I get to reach that point, then I can help them. Then they will trust me, then they will follow me
2019 12 20f Retrieve
[Arteta delivers warning to underperforming Arsenal stars] It wasn’t only the performance, it was the atmosphere and energy. That worried me a little bit. I understand that they [the fans] are used to success and fighting for things and at the moment it’s difficult for them to swallow the situation
I have my ideas that I would like to keep to myself because I have to corroborate them when I see them act, when I see them behave, when I see them live together. I want to do things my way but by convincing them that’s it’s the right way for everybody to live better. Everybody has to respect each other first of all, and I want people who are accountable for what I’m asking for them to do. I don’t want them hiding, I want people to take responsibility for their jobs and I want people who deliver passion and energy in the football club. Anyone who doesn’t buy into this, or that has a negative effect or whatever, is not good enough for this environment or this culture.
There are things to change, absolutely, because they’re not performing at the level that we expect them to. I will have to help them and to help them I need to know what’s happening, I need to understand how they’re feeling, what they’re lacking. If I get to reach that point, then I can help them. Then they will trust me and then they will follow me
[Arteta accepts that star players such as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette could look to leave unless things improve] Probably, but that’s a consequence of what we have been talking about. If we can create and build a culture where everybody is accountable we can bring some leadership in to the team and some expectations and put some passion and clear direction in to what we do and then we create an identity. If they feel part of that identity they will want to stay as they will enjoy it. At the moment, I feel as though they suffer a little bit. When you are suffering, sometimes you want to go away. When you enjoy you want to be part of something
2019 12 20g Retrieve
[Arteta conceded that he faces a major rebuilding job. Asked about Arsenal losing their identity] That’s what I’m sensing from the outside. I’d like to understand the reasons why […] to implement certain things that are quick wins for the players, staff and everybody. I completely understand [the fans’] concerns […] I will give every drop of blood for this football club to make it better
2019 12 20h Retrieve
[Arteta reveals he was ‘close’ to replacing Wenger as Arsenal boss] I was a little bit close [to replacing Wenger]. It wasn’t the right time. The right time came now. I’m glad I learned a lot from that experience. It was great to be part of the process. I was very prepared for this one and it helped
I wouldn’t be sitting here if [Wenger] didn’t have the vision to join this incredible club. I have my ideas that I would like to keep for myself. I have to corroborate myself when I see them act and behave. I want to do things my way by convincing them that this is the right way. I want people who are comfortable with what I’m asking them to do. I want people who deliver passion and energy to the football club. Anybody who doesn’t buy into it is not good enough for this club and culture. I need to understand how they’re feeling, what they’re lacking. If I reach that point I can help them, they will trust me and follow me
Sometimes in this industry you can have a plan and an idea of how to develop. And then emotions get involved. When Arsenal knock the door, and it touches my heart, it makes it very difficult [to say no]. It was a very difficult decision. But I felt the club needed someone to appoint. They were so convinced they wanted me that I said I have to take the challenge
2019 12 20i Retrieve
[Arteta out to change energy at Arsenal after witnessing Manchester City beating] The first priority is to change the energy. Last week I was here with Manchester City and I felt a little bit down. I want to get everybody in the club with the same mindset. We have to build a culture that sustains the rest. My job is to convince everybody that this is how we’re going to live. If you’re going to be part of this organisation it’s going to be this way. We need the fans. We need to engage them, to transmit our behaviour and intention. That’s the only way they’ll give us a little bit and we’ll feel that connection. I’m sensing a good energy since coming in today. I’m so happy
[The 37-year-old explained that he felt the club were losing their identity and vowed to give his utmost to bring it back] [Arsenal losing identity] is what I’m sensing from the outside. I’d like to understand the reasons why, to implement certain things that are quick wins for the players, staff and everybody. I completely understand the concerns. I will give every drop of blood for this football club to make it better
I feel back home. I’m extremely happy and proud to have been given the opportunity. I’ve been preparing for a few years for this challenge to come. I know what this club deserves. I’m ready for the challenge. I can’t wait to start working with the players. If I didn’t feel ready and prepared for this I wouldn’t be sitting in this chair. It was strange [coming back in today]. I’m in a different role and position when I left a few years ago. It was always a dream from the day I left. When I left I said I’m going outside, I’m going to learn and get prepared and hopefully one day I can come back here when I feel I am ready to make that step
2019 12 21 Retrieve
[Arteta asked for attitude: Arsenal’s young guns answered the call against Everton] I want people to take responsibility for their jobs and I want people who deliver passion and energy in the football club
2019 12 23 Retrieve
[Arteta keeping Ljungberg on at Arsenal as Ozil is offered clean slate] I spoke to him after the game, I told him who I want to bring in and I wanted to know what he was feeling. We decided the best thing would be for him to carry on with us. I knew him a little and we will start a new chapter and he was very positive
[When asked where Ozil stands at present] It’s a question for Freddie Ljungberg. I just wanted him to pick the best possible lineup for the game. You’re not going to be judged on what you done in the past, positive or negative. We will try to put the most competitive team out, we are to be ready and nullify them as much as possible
I helped as much as I could. I gave everything I had to improve the club and the players to make them more secure. Jumping into Pep’s door was a big challenge but I did it
[Arteta is about to enter a first transfer window in which he will have a say on player movement] We had many other conversations. We have a meeting soon and some ideas but we have to put them together
2019 12 24 Retrieve
[New Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta will be assisted by Freddie Ljungberg, Albert Stuivenberg and Steve Round, the club confirmed on Tuesday] I spoke to Freddie Ljungberg after the game, I told him who I want to bring in and I wanted to know what he was feeling. We decided the best thing would be for him to carry on with us. I knew him a little and we will start a new chapter and he was very positive
I am delighted to have this talented group of coaches alongside me. They bring a great mix of experience and fresh thinking. Along with the talented people we have in the club already, they will be key people to get us back to winning ways
2019 12 26 Retrieve
[Arteta delighted with Ozil’s ‘incredible attitude’ after offering clean slate] To be fair, his attitude in training since the day that I walked in the building has been incredible. I’ve seen this and I said I would give a clean slate to everybody and that was for him too. When we were preparing and watching where we could hurt the opponent, we believed he could be a key point. Like this, he responded, did what he had to do and we could have put two or three goals in the net because of him
[Arteta was pleased by the reaction after the break as Aubameyang’s 12th Premier League goal of the season] I was worried to see what would happen if we conceded and we did, but I was very pleased with the character they showed. The way they came in at half-time, their faces, their reactions and how much they wanted it… Normally when you are in this process, belief goes down and a lot of things from the past can come back but that didn’t happen, the opposite did, and that’s really positive
2019 12 26b Retrieve
[Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta admits that he is still learning his way at the Emirates Stadium] I am pleased with a lot of things I have seen today and a lot of things we practiced that happened today. I am not happy we have not won the game but happy overall. It’s part of the process to learn when it’s time and when it’s not. In terms of attitude, desire and commitment it was better than I expect. They are not used to playing at this rhythm. I am still learning about the players, about the priorities to make them more secure when they jump on to the pitch. My only aim now is to find solutions, to attack better, defend better, I don’t look at the games, the urgency, the impact, needs to be now.
It was intense, I was so excited, I just wanted to pass that energy to the players and I really enjoyed it. I think we had the chances in the second half to put the game in our favour, but in general in terms of attitude, desire and commitment, it was better than expected, not happy. I did not how long the players would last at that rhythm with the demands I made of them but the attitude was spot on. There are no negotiable’s at this club, there are standards that have to be done at this club and they held them today
[Arteta fielded Mesut Ozil two games after the former Germany international’s controversial reaction to being substitued against City] I think he played really well. It was intense, I was so excited, I just wanted to pass that energy to the players and I really enjoyed it
2019 12 26c Retrieve
[Arteta reveals Xhaka was on his Man City transfer list] As a player, when I was going from Arsenal to City to start coaching and we were looking in that position, he was one of the players on my list. This is how much I liked him. I was happy when Arsenal signed him because I thought he was going to be a terrific player. He has done some really good things and now he has got stuck in a very difficult situation that, I think, was growing and growing and growing and one day it exploded. But I have been amazed as well by how this relationship is starting to come back a little bit and I think the fans have been very, very positive about him as well. Obviously it is difficult to change completely the scenario from where he was to a magnificent one. But I think we are in the right direction with him.
[Bundesliga club Hertha Berlin have been linked with a transfer swoop for Xhaka in January but Arteta has made it clear to the midfielder how much he values him] I told him how much I like him and what I expect from him, how important he is for the team. I am here to help him, I want him to feel that we are right behind him. Not just myself, but the whole club. If we can get the people in the right way as well, the fans with him, I think it will be helpful for the team, which is where it matters
2019 12 26d Retrieve
[Xhaka’s reported exit from the Emirates didn’t seem so straightforward in the lead-up the match against the Cherries, with Arteta declaring his admiration for the former skipper] As a player, when I was going from Arsenal to City to start coaching and we were looking in that position, he was one of the players on my list. This is how much I liked him. I was happy when Arsenal signed him because I thought he was going to be a terrific player. He has done some really good things and now he has got stuck in a very difficult situation that, I think, was growing and growing and growing and one day it exploded. But I have been amazed as well by how this relationship is starting to come back a little bit and I think the fans have been very, very positive about him as well. Obviously it is difficult to change completely the scenario from where he was to a magnificent one. But I think we are in the right direction with him
2019 12 27 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta believes a London derby victory over Chelsea would give Arsenal the momentum to turn their fortunes around] I think energy is everything, in life, in football and sports, and if we are able to generate this [against Chelsea] it will give us a lift. I was really pleased how the fans treated the players [at Bournemouth] and I was happy that the players went to see the fans after the game as well because we need that connection. Slowly we need to build that back to what it was because it’s going to be very powerful for us to use that. [Chelsea] are a terrific team, so it will be a really good test for us
[Arteta acknowledged he needs to get the players to buy into his philosophy in order to win over the fans] First, I think I need the players, and if I convince the players after we can convince the fans, but yeah, I think it’s a very important part of the job. We play for them. At the end of the day they expect a lot from us, we have to give them enjoyment, we have to make their lives better and when we win they will leave better because they will be happier. It’s our responsibility and we have to do everything we can to achieve that
2019 12 28 Retrieve
[New Arsenal manager Mikel Aretata has revealed he predicted his return to the club as a manager upon playing his final game for the club in 2016] I remember the last time I was going down the tunnel, with my kids in my arms, I said to my wife, ‘One day I will come back here as the manager’. It has come a little quicker than I expected but that was a dream. I’ve got more family now - I’ve got more kids! I’ve had more experiences but I had a very clear idea of what I wanted to do so, two years before my retirement, I started to do my coaching badges. I already had that feeling that I wanted to try this game over that line, and I am really happy where I am
[Arteta’s first game in charge saw Arsenal fight back to claim a 1-1 draw against Bournemouth with the Gunners moving to 12th in the Premier League] I would like to start to see a little bit more control in some situations, and more awareness of why things happened. The players have to understand two seconds earlier the picture that is coming, and where the solutions are. But that will come over time. They will pick it up.
We don’t have much time to train in, I only have I think two sessions in one week with the starting XI, which is nothing. But through video, through talks, through individual meetings, slowly, they have to embrace that information…and we will start to build some fundamentals and principles that as a team will help them.
There is a still a big room for improvement, but that’s every day, being on their toes, being demanding with them, being challenging with them, and convincing them that if they do that, straight away they don’t have to run as far, they will be more organised, they won’t fight with each other because one is not doing what is required, and they will control the games better
2019 12 28b Retrieve
[Arteta: Pepe can be ‘absolutely top’ player for Arsenal] I think, obviously, it was a big change to come from France to here. As well, he found a team that, in the moment he wasn’t performing at his best, the environment for him to settle wasn’t ideal, so it’s not only about him. We’re here to help him. If he’s willing to learn, to work hard, I assure you he has the potential be top, absolutely top. He showed in two or three actions [in the 1-1 draw with Bournemouth on December 26] how good he can be, but he has to be consistent
The problem with confidence is he’s only confident if he plays, or he has [the] confidence [of] the manager if he trains well enough to convince me to have confidence in him. I think it has to be a mix between the two. But the overall structure, the way we play and approach the game and the things we do on these pitches is going to help them [the players]. We can’t demand the strikers or attacking players to generate things like [the flick of a switch] – they have to have the play that sustains everything together and arrive in better positions as many times as possible to then be able to create as many situations as we want
2019 12 29 Retrieve
[When asked whether Jorginho should still have been on the pitch when he scored] I think that’s up to the referee. For me it was very clear. That’s it
I’m really disappointed with the result and the way we conceded the goals, and the timing of them as well. (But) I’m pleased with a lot of things that I’ve seen. I’m pleased with a lot of things we worked on in training that actually happened in the game, and how they bought into this. But I’m disappointed to lose the game obviously. We had to sustain that level for longer periods against a very, very physical team like Chelsea.
We have to move on. I don’t think [it’s a lack of concentration]. We’re 1-0 up, pretty comfortable even if we were defending much deeper than I like. I cannot think about any clear chances for Chelsea before that. The decision-making happens and it will happen again for sure, but when it happens against this type of opposition you get punished
2019 12 29b Retrieve
[Arteta hopes Xhaka will stay at Arsenal as he explains midfielder’s absence for Chelsea defeat] He played at Bournemouth, he played really well, he was very committed, he played a really good game. After the game he started to feel ill. He had a temperature and he wasn’t feeling good. The last two days he’s been in bed. That’s why he’s not been selected
[When asked if the ex-Borussia Monchengladbach star wants to leave the club in January] I hope not
[Arteta also touched on Calum Chambers’ condition after the centre-back was taken off with an injury] The doctors are assessing him. The first feeling he got, it wasn’t very positive
2019 12 29c Retrieve
[New Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta believes that he can win the fans of the biggest football club in England back onside] We need to connect the team with the fans again. I sense in the last few seasons there has been a big disconnection, and we are losing a lot of power. I said before that they are probably the most important part of the football club, and we need to get them on board, we need to convince them, and we need to be able to transmit what we are trying to do with the team.
Hopefully on Sunday they will start to see some things where they think: ‘OK, I take this on board, I start to like a few things!’ The process is going to take some time, but I hope we can start to engage them again. I think things happened in the last two seasons that have a strong say on the situation. If the fans can see an identity close to what they are used to seeing with Arsenal, they will be on board.
There are some non-negotiables. The demands we put on the team, the commitment, the energy we put in, that dominance. We are the biggest football club in England, and we have to play a little bit with that arrogance, that belief. This stadium has to create fear again. I used to hate coming here as an opponent, and we need to use that power.
The moment you jump into this football club, you feel the pressure attached to playing here. The demand is to win, win trophies, to win every three days, be better than your opponents. Those are the standards here, and it can’t be anything different. When you have the crowd with you, it’s confidence, it’s belief, you feel protected. This club deserves nothing else but excellence. It deserves the best every single day. Everyone who jumps through that door needs to realise that is what we’re going to be requiring
2019 12 29d Retrieve
[Arteta says Arsenal have to take responsibility and lift Bernd Leno after costly mistake against Chelsea] He will be down. When an error costs the team points, it’s harder. We have to lift him. He’s done a really good job since he joined this football club and we have to respect that. We just need to bring the confidence back in and that’s it
[Arteta refused to blame referee Craig Pawson, saying his players had to take responsibility for their own mistakes] I blame my team. We are responsible for everything we did wrong on that football pitch. The decisions we didn’t get right, obviously. The other things we cannot control or change them now
More than something related to the organisation, physically it was tough to maintain the level Chelsea play at at the moment. We are asking them to do something different, to play at a different pace, much more aggressive and at the moment they suffered. We had a lot of injuries; we’re putting demands on young players. I don’t think that they didn’t want to do it or that they were scared, I think it was just too physical for them in the end
2019 12 30 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta made clear from the moment he arrived that absolute commitment is a sine qua non for this new Arsenal] Everyone who doesn’t buy into this, it’s not good enough for this environment
2019 12 31 Retrieve
[Arteta warns Arsenal over Manchester United’s threat on the break] The second goal that we conceded was in a transition where we had a bad structure and organisation when defending big spaces with equal numbers. We made one half-bad decision and these things are similar, with space they [United] can punish you for sure
[Arteta admits he is concerned the manner of defeat could have done further damage to already low confidence levels] That’s my worry now. I hope that the result doesn’t affect them too much. They were all physically blown and disappointed in how the game ended because they didn’t feel that they deserved that, but we have to move on
2019 12 31b Retrieve
[Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has said he is looking to structure his Gunners side around the talents of playmaker Mesut Ozil] That’s what I’m hoping, that he can sustain that level every three or four days. He’s putting in everything he has to try to do that. His numbers, physically, have improved so much, and he’s willing. That’s what I can tell you from every day what I see in training. I’m not surprised. I know the ability, I know the player we have there. The structure has to help him for him to take everything that he has inside. On his own, he cannot do it. He needs the collective structure, organisation and his team-mates. There are only one or two players in the world who can do something on their own. He needs help and he needs the team to play in a certain way to facilitate his strengths more and more every time in the game. That’s what we are trying to do
I tried to prepare the team collectively and individually with the strengths and weaknesses that we have, to avoid the weaknesses and promote as much as possible our strengths. I think Mesut in those positions is very effective. I put him in the team if I see every day his attitude, his desire, if his understanding of what we are trying to do is there and he has the will. If he is in a better moment than somebody else, I will pick him. The moment this changes, he won’t play
2019 12 20 Retrieve
[He says he knows what the club deserves, and cannot wait to get started] I feel back home. I am extremely happy and proud to be given the opportunity to be manager of this football club. I’m sensing a good energy today since I walked in at London Colney. I feel so happy. I can’t say any other thing. We need to plug these two things together. I’m so excited…I’ve had many conversations with the senior people at the club…I have a good feeling
[Mikel Arteta told the Arsenal magazine during his time as a player, speaking about how he wants his teams to play] I want the football to be expressive, entertaining. I cannot have a concept of football where everything is based on the opposition. We have to dictate the game, we have to be the ones taking the initiative, and we have to entertain the people coming to watch us
2019 12 21 Retrieve
[In his first press conference as Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta also gave his thoughts on Pep Guardiola’s work ethic] What I’ve learned [from Guardiola] is you have to be ruthless and consistent and have to fit every day the culture of the club to get a winning mentality. To sustain it is even harder so every day is important. Every act is important. His workrate is incredible
[When asked whether interim coach Freddie Ljungberg will be part of his coaching team, Arteta said] I need to sit down and have a proper conversation with him. We might need eight hours to explain the situation, see what are his aims and what he’s seen from the players. We will grab a coffee - maybe a bowl of coffee - and make the decision
2019 12 31 Retrieve
[Arteta salutes Bukayo Saka’s sacrifice for Arsenal cause as youngster thrives in unfamiliar left-back post] He’s learning that you are able to adapt and that you are able to sacrifice for the team, and [you learn that you] don’t use excuses. If you are moved, to say ‘OK, now if I do not play good, I have the right excuse because this is not my position’. It’s the complete opposite, try to learn, try to pick things up straight away and try to be more productive for the team, and I think he [Saka] has done it really, really well. Those game moments, you have to read them and when you play more games and you become more mature, you start to make better decisions all the time because you can sniff where the danger is, depending on the result, how many minutes are played and what happened in the last two actions. And we have to help him to do that
I love working with young players. The last few years I worked with so many of them and it’s so fulfilling when they are willing and they ask the right questions, and they want more and they are eager to learn. It’s incredible because when that [development] really happens, afterwards, for them, it’s very inspirational
2020 01 01 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta is hopeful his Arsenal team’s performance in beating Manchester United 2-0 has given the Emirates Stadium faithful something to be proud of] It feels great, incredible; I’m so happy and proud of the players and the performance they put in. Right from the start I could feel a different atmosphere. Thank you so much to the fans because we really need them. The players play so much better when they are behind us. Hopefully we gave them something to be proud of today
It was much better in the first half than the second. Everything we planned to do worked really well. We had enough chances to put the game to bed much earlier. Physically the level dropped in the second half but the commitment and desire was terrific. I try to help the players as much as possible and give them the right structure to feel comfortable. But they have to deliver and I’m so happy they are doing that at the moment. The performances are getting better so I was desperate for the win and we got it
2020 01 01b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says he believes Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka will stay at the Emirates Stadium in the January transfer window] I think he is going to stay, yes. Very good. I really like him. I think with the way we want to play, we’ll get him on board, he can be a tremendous player for the football club
[When pressed on whether he had received assurances from Xhaka on his future] Yes. He did, yes
2020 01 01c Retrieve
[Ozil’s resurgence symbolises Arteta’s evolving Arsenal] I put Ozil in the team if I see every day that his attitude, desire and understanding of what we’re trying to do is there. He has the will and if he is in a better moment than somebody else, I will pick him. The moment that this changes, then he won’t play
[The early signs are positive. Ozil was excellent against Bournemouth and his first-half performance against Chelsea was as good as he’s delivered in a long time - on and off the ball] I know him really well, so I’m not surprised. I know his ability and I know the player we have there. I’m hoping he can sustain this level every three or four days. He’s putting in everything he has to try and do that, and I think his numbers physically have improved so much as well. He’s willing every day in training
I want to avoid the weaknesses and promote our strengths as much as possible. I think that Mesut Ozil in these kinds of positions can be very, very effective. On his own he can’t do it. He needs the collective structure and organisation and his teammates. Nowadays, there are only one or two players in the world who can do something on their own. He needs help and he needs the team to play in a certain way to facilitate his strengths more and more in the game. That’s what we’re trying to do
2020 01 02 Retrieve
[Arteta confirms Chambers joins Kieran Tierney and Hector Bellerin on the sidelines] Obviously we had a bad injury with Calum a few days ago that is going to change our plans at the back. We are going to try and be in the market to see options that can strengthen the team. That’s for sure and that’s our obligation and we’re going to be working on that. My obligation is to give my opinion on the things that we can improve. But the reality at the moment is we are not going to be able to do much. I am more concerned to get people back from injures than the signings and to try and improve the players that I have here. If something extra comes up and we think it’s the right opportunity to improve what we have, let’s do it.
2020 01 02b Retrieve
[Arteta has worked hard to get Xhaka back onside and now appears to have reversed the situation] I think he’s going to stay. I really like him. The way we want to play, if we get him on board, then he can be a tremendous player for the football club. I’m just delighted to have him
2020 01 02c Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says he is not thinking about the prospect of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang leaving Arsenal during the January transfer window] I don’t even think about that possibility with Auba, I want him here. I had a conversation with him and I wanted to understand his feelings, the reason why he was feeling he wasn’t in the right place for his career.
I told him I was ready to support him. I wanted his team-mates to get his back, to help him change his mind because we need him. I’ve seen him act [professionally] and train every day - and the quality of the player […] He can be a really quality player for the club. From my perspective, I don’t want him to leave. I hope [he stays]. I said to the club no. I said to him no. After, in life, I cannot control what happens.
[Arteta also indicated Eddie Nketiah will depart on loan for the second half of the campaign after his spell at Leeds was cut short] Again, I have to speak with him. I think the first idea was that he was going to be on loan for the rest of the season. We have to assess the situation again now. At the moment [I don’t know] but I will have some answers very soon
2020 01 03 Retrieve
[Arteta hints at rest for misfiring Lacazette but expects Arsenal striker to come good] He had the chances to put away [against United]. He has been really helpful in giving us a lot of options. He makes his team-mates better, that’s one of the biggest qualities. As well, every time he is in front of goal normally he is so clinical. I am disappointed that he hasn’t been rewarded with all the work he has done in the last three games because he could have scored three or four goals easily. But the goal will come for him naturally because he is a natural finisher. Does he just need one to go in anyhow? Exactly. And maybe a little bit fresher legs will help as well
2020 01 04 Retrieve
[Arteta: Arsenal need clarity and stability around captaincy] The more stability we can generate with our captain and the players we have in the squad, I think the more clarity we will have to transmit to the fans what we are trying to do. There are many factors, some we cannot control, but at the moment everything is ok and not the time for me to change things in place because I haven’t seen real things to make the decisions.
I have been at clubs that have four or five captains. It is more a leadership group than captains. At the end, it is one guy wearing the armband and after the team picks the leaders. The moment they pick the leaders is when someone talks if they listen or they are looking at the roof. That is when you see.
The moment you start to see different groups, they have leaders in this groups, but they are not shared in the best common interests of the group and this is what I wanted to avoid. We have some leaders, some are more leaders on the pitch and some more outside the pitch. Some have influence to players that is very necessary. We want to bring all together
[Arteta himself captained the Gunners as a player and revealed he thought Arsene Wenger made a mistake when he was first handed the armband in 2012] I didn’t know. I arrived and I had the armband next to my t-shirt. I asked Arsene ‘boss, this is here, is it a mistake?’ He said ‘no, you are the captain’ and I was like ok, good. It felt incredible. I wasn’t here a long time and he put a lot of faith in me just when I arrived. I was very privileged and honoured
2020 01 05 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says it will be impossible for Arsenal to be successful without having a united fanbase behind the team] It’s impossible. It’s too powerful, the fanbase we have. Our history. How much these people have been with this football club, the great players and teams they’ve seen. If we get that connection [again] it’s so powerful. Without it I think that’s impossible
When I arrived after the defeat to Manchester United it [the atmosphere] was like this and slowly we started to change it and it got much, much better. It’s in our hands. We have to give them and if we give them they will give us even more. They’re looking for success again for this football club, they’re used to that, there’s a history relating to that. When you take the fans to Wembley it’s a different scenario, something they’re proud of. It’s a special day. They travel with their family. I think it generates something special
2020 01 06 Retrieve
[Arteta pleased as Arsenal ‘learn to suffer’ in FA Cup victory] Now I’m really pleased but we saw two different teams from the first to second half. I tried to tell them exactly what they were going to face and after 32 minutes we had won one duel, I think. We changed our attitude, desire and organisation at half-time and then we were completely different. They had to experience how hard and tough it was going to be. I watched a lot of Leeds United games and they battered every team every three days. It was good for my players to learn and to suffer on the pitch. Thank God, I wasn’t happy at all [after the first half]. If you’re not ready for Leeds, you’ll get exposed. To play against Leeds is like going to the dentist. They are a great team and what they’ve built is powerful. When I see what I don’t want to see, I cannot be happy and I have to let them know
2020 01 06b Retrieve
[How Arteta plans to get Arsenal ‘addicted’ to trophies again] When I arrived here we were trying to fight for the Premier League. At the time we didn’t quite have the level to sustain every year to do that so the cups became very important. Obviously this club has a massive history with that and it was years without winning absolutely anything. For us to lift that first FA Cup for this football club was a massive relief. It generated a really good belief and unity around our team. That helped that group of players to achieve what they achieved later when they won other cups
Winning brings togetherness. When you have beautiful experiences together and win trophies those experiences stay within the group. You like more the people you work with, you believe in them, you share some fantastic moments. That stays. That habit of winning, winning, winning. When you win you don’t want to stop. You become addicts to that. We have to try to implement that at this football club
It’s too powerful, the fan base we have. Our history. How much these people have been with this football club, the great players and teams they’ve seen. That connection is so powerful. Without it I think that’s impossible. They’re looking for success again for this football club, they’re used to that, there’s a history relating to that
2020 01 07 Retrieve
[Speaking after Arsenal’s 1-0 victory against Leeds United in the FA Cup on Monday night, Arteta was quizzed on a potential move for Boateng] We don’t talk about any transfers and we are working on a few things. When the club has something to say I will let you know
2020 01 09 Retrieve
[Arteta keen to keep Aubameyang but doesn’t expect ‘big things’ from Arsenal in winter window] I was very pleased to read those comments. He knows exactly what I think about him and obviously he’s a massive player for us. But at the moment we’re in the middle of the season and we haven’t discussed anything further on that at the club.
[Arteta added when asked if he would like to see discussions held before the end of the season] My intention is to keep Auba obviously because I know that if we keep Auba with us, we’re going to be stronger and closer to winning football matches. That’s the only thing
[Pressed further on whether he feels confident in that quest] I don’t know, we haven’t discussed that. But I’m confident that he’s very happy here because that’s what he said in the media
I’m not expecting big things. I’m expecting big things from the players I have at the moment, the players that are recovering from injuries. That’s the biggest expectations from my side, they’re there. If we can find something to help us go through the season in a more balanced way in certain areas, and is helpful, we’ll look at the options. We always have to be looking because obviously we have some bad injuries for players who are going to be out for a long time. We have to see if we can find options there
[Pressed on whether he may have to raise funds through sales] We’re not thinking to sell. There’s nothing concrete at the moment on the table, as I said, I’m focusing on the players we have now and this transfer window is a little bit tricky and things might come at the end. But I don’t know which way
2020 01 09b Retrieve
[Arteta would be allowed to make at least one permanent signing, especially in defence, where he has just lost Calum Chambers to a season-ending cruciate ligament injury] Obviously, we had a bad injury with Calum a few days ago that is going to change our plans at the back. We are going to try to be in the market to see options that can strengthen the team. That’s for sure and that’s our obligation, and we’re going to be working on that. My obligation is to give my opinion on the things that we can improve. But the reality at the moment is we are not going to be able to do much. I am more concerned to get people back from injures than the signings and to try and improve the players that I have here. If something extra comes up and we think it’s the right opportunity to improve what we have, let’s do it
2020 01 10 Retrieve
[Arteta has praised Luiz while revealing that he spoke to the experienced defender when he first arrived and called on him to become a real leader within the changing room] That’s what I wanted to demand of him. He is a player that has won more trophies than anybody else in that dressing room. We have to use that in a very powerful way. I wanted him to step up, I wanted him to put all his qualities - his personality and his experience - towards the team and he has made a big step forward. I am very very pleased with him. In the games he has played under me so far he has been terrific. His attitude in training, the way he communicates with his team-mates, his desire to still learn, it’s superb. I am delighted with him
[Improving things defensively was always going to be Arteta’s biggest challenge] I have to share my principals and what I expect from them in every situation on the pitch, which might be a bit a little bit different from what they do with other managers, but positionally they have to understand what I expect from them
[When asked specifically what he had been working on] Different types of drills, drills where they are facing the ball when the ball is far from them. Situations where they have to defend transitions when they are overloaded, when they are in equal numbers. When the ball is with the full-backs, what I expect from them. Where I want the line in relation to the ball, not just the opponent, a few things that for us are important
[One of the major criticisms levelled at Arsenal in recent years has been over the amount of individual errors leading to goals] For me the most helpful thing for that is communication. If you are constantly communicating with your team-mates around you it makes you stay focused on what is happening all the time. If you don’t talk to each other there are always moments or gaps when your focus can go and the back four can’t have those moments
2020 01 10b Retrieve
[Tyreece John-Jules goes with the blessing of Mikel Arteta who admitted the highly-rated youngster – who has been training regularly with the first team of late – almost got a run-out in the 1-0 FA Cup win over Leeds on Monday] I think Tyreece John-Jules’s got a good chance. He needs to go and prove himself now, and he needs to challenge himself. He’s probably in a very comfortable environment here but he needs to get exposed and after that we’ll see where he is
2020 01 09c Retrieve
[Arteta explains how he convinced Granit Xhaka to make Arsenal exit U-turn] The first message for him was that I wanted to understand how he was feeling, why he was feeling that way. I wanted him to hear from me my opinion on him, and that I was ready to support him and that I was ready to push the club to be supportive of him too, because I thought he could be a really, really good player for us and he could enjoy in this football club playing under me. I tried to convince him that way. He thought about it, he had a very positive response afterwards, and I think he changed his mind
Every club has its own issues. It’s very common now. Some things come within the club, some within the media, some from social media. It’s very difficult nowadays to have one full year where everything is perfect. It’s the environment, we have deal with that and hopefully in a few months nobody remembers those issues. Of course it’s not ideal when players respond and it creates an instability. So as much as we can avoid it, the better
2020 01 11 Retrieve
[Arteta: Arsenal played exactly how I want in Crystal Palace draw] The first 35 minutes is exactly what I want our Arsenal team to play like. We were dominant in the right positions and created chances. After that we started to give free kicks and give balls away. In the first 15 minutes of the second half, credit to them because they pushed. They started to put men up front and we struggled. We switched off completely for the goal and that’s unacceptable. I don’t think we let our concentration slip. To control Palace for 90 minutes here is impossible. They put balls in the box and you have to defend the situation.
[The Spanish coach defended Aubameyang from claims that his challenge on Meyer was malicious, but admits it was a strong tackle] I haven’t seen it, but I think it was a harsh challenge. There was no intention, but I think he mistimed it.
[The north London side lost midfielder Lucas Torreira to injury halfway through the game] We have to check with the doctor but it looks like an injury
2020 01 11b Retrieve
[Arteta on Dani Ceballos] I know Dani Ceballos really well from Spain. I watched him many, many times. He always wants the ball, he has big personality to play. I like him. He is getting much closer to the fitness levels that I expect from him to be competing with his team-mates. Obviously, he had a long-term injury and he had an adaptation to this league. But he is a player that can fit our style and now he needs to make a step forward and make things difficult for me and my selection. Now he is ready to step in
I like him more when he’s closer to the box rather than always coming deep to receive the ball. He’s a very creative player, a player who in the final third can cause problems
2020 01 12 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta has called on other members of his Arsenal side to step up while captain and leading scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang serves a three-game ban] Losing probably the most important player is never nice. We have other players that can play in that position. We will try to find a way and be as competitive as possible. They now have to make a step forward now he is not able to contribute to the team with goals. Someone else has to do it and I want to see that reaction too
[One player who is unlikely to move into the starting line-up is Eddie Nketiah] I think we have to think long term with Eddie Nketiah. We have to respect his evolution, his development and we don’t have to make decisions just based on two or three games
2020 01 14 Retrieve
[Arsenal hope to have Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s three-game ban reduced after he was sent off during the 1-1 draw at Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Saturday] I just watched it and it looked nasty, to be fair. Knowing Auba, there’s no intention to make such a tackle. Hopefully he hasn’t been injured and we are sorry for that. The decision was made and we have to accept it
2020 01 15 Retrieve
[Gunners boss Arteta reveals Aubameyang will have to serve his suspension. Aubameyang was sent off midway through the second half of Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Crystal Palace on Saturday after lunging in on Max Meyer] That has been confirmed that he will be suspended for three games, so we are not going to have him for three fixtures. It is a big shame, it is a big loss for us because as well, we know it was not his intention. But he mistimed the tackle, made the decision and we have to accept it. He was very sad after the game, disappointed he left the team with 10 men. It was an action which was completely accidental in my opinion. For me he has been superb, working so hard, scoring goals and probably has been the most important player of the team so to lose him is really bad news for us
2020 01 15b Retrieve
[Iran then retaliated with targeted strikes on U.S. airbases in Iraq and accidently shot down a Ukrainian passenger plane, killing all 176 passengers on board. Security talks key as Arsenal ponder Middle East winter training camp] The security decision will be the priority. If we are advised by the club and the people making those decisions that it’s not safe we won’t be going anywhere. We [have] talked about different options in this break to go away and live together a bit in a different environment with better weather conditions away from here. We still have a few things to look after from a club perspective and when we know all that we will confirm what we are doing. But at the moment we have two or three different options
[Another major issue Arsenal could face in terms of planning their winter break is that it could be disrupted by a potential FA Cup replay] We know where the priorities are with the fixtures, and the priority at the moment is not to protect the players and have everybody with the same condition. So we could change from one scenario to the other, which is a little bit bizarre, but we cannot change it
2020 01 15c Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta admits his admiration for John Stones but insists Arsenal are not interested in the England centre-back] No truth at all. John is a player I really like. We followed him before we signed him when I was at Man City. I worked with him for many years, I know him well and when I look at centre-backs he has many attributes I like, but we are not interested in him
[Arteta has previously stated that he would like to bolster his squad this month given the problems he is facing defensively] It has to be the right player, in the right context that financially we can compete with and attract. All these factors need to be put together, it’s not easy in this market. We have a lot of issues at the back, the fact as well that Calum got the big injury, obviously that modified our plans. It’s what we have, it’s the situation. This can happen, between December and January this can happen. We have to live with it.
2020 01 16 Retrieve
[Speaking about the current injury problems in his defence ahead of that game] We are playing with full-backs that are not full-backs. They are wingers or central midfielders and could we afford to lose full-backs? No, but we don’t have any full-backs. We have a lot of issues at the back, it can happen between December and January, it is very common. We have to live with it. We have to put 11 players out on the pitch on Saturday and I am sure we will. They will try their best, and I will try to select the ones who in my opinion are the best fit for that game
2020 01 16b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta has not ruled out letting Shkodran Mustafi leave this month] Can we afford [it]? The ideal scenario is no. If it happens, we will have to invent something
We have a lot of issues at the back, the fact that Calum got the big injury is modifying our plans. We are playing with full-backs that are not full-backs. They are wingers or central midfielders and could we afford to lose full-backs? No, but we don’t have any full-backs. We have to live with it, this is what we have. We have to put 11 players out on the pitch on Saturday and I am sure we will. They will try their best, and I will try to select the ones who in my opinion are the best fit for that game
I have known him since my time when I was at Everton. I know what he can do. I know this history at this football club, but it is up to him. I told everybody from day one: ‘It is up to you guys. You show me how much you want it, you show me you are committed here, you are going to have a chance and it is going to come this week, next week or the following one’. They are all going to have the chance to play. After it is up to them to show it
2020 01 17 Retrieve
[What do Arsenal plan to do with Eddie Nketiah following Leeds recall?] We have to sit down with the loan department and discuss the best possible way for him to keep developing
The environment he’s been living in has improved him as a player, 100 per cent. He played some minutes, not as much as we wanted, but he’s a kid with incredible potential and we have to make a decision for the club, not for the next four months, but for his career. What’s the best thing to do? We have to sit down with him, hear from him, that’s very important because we need to know what he needs as well, and make the right decision for the next five months
We have to think mid-to-long term with Eddie. We have to respect his evolution and development. We don’t make a decision just based on two or three games
2020 01 18 Retrieve
[Arteta annoyed by VAR as Arsenal denied penalty against Sheffield United] I think it’s very clear. It was the same as with Chelsea, very clear. I don’t know how many tools do we need? A lot of things happen and the challenge is getting bigger and bigger because we are getting a lot of bad surprises every day with some injuries and suspensions. But we are up for it whatever we have we have we will try our best every time we get on that pitch and we did that today
Absolutely, I think they (the fans) are appreciating the work we are putting in here. The players with their commitment, how much they want it, their attitude. I am so happy with the fans because it makes a huge difference when we have that type of atmosphere at home it is very helpful
2020 01 18b Retrieve
[Arteta’s Arsenal are on the right path despite Sheffield United setback] I inherited a team that was in a difficult situation and we’re trying to improve it as much as possible. In the second half, Sheffield United didn’t generate any efforts on goal - it’s just one long ball, a second ball and then someone put it in the goal from an incredible angle. It’s difficult to control it.
[The big problem for Arsenal now is killing teams off] In the Premier League, if you don’t put the game to bed then in the last 10 or 15 minutes you just need a long ball, a second ball, a set-piece, and you can give the points away
2020 01 18c Retrieve
[When asked about his recruitment plans] We are playing with full-backs that are not full-backs. They are wingers or central midfielders and could we afford to lose full-backs? No, but we don’t have any full-backs
2020 01 18d Retrieve
[Arteta: Arsenal wonderkid Reiss Nelson ‘has the potential to do whatever he wants’] I coached him when he was 16 and straight away he caught my eye. Reiss is a boy that is willing to learn and who loves the game, but I think he has been a little bit confused in the last few years about what direction he had to take and with some of the decisions that he made. Now I can see that he really wants it and I think he has the potential to do whatever he wants. He needs guidance, he needs a little bit of a stick, and he’s up for it. I trust him because he wants it and I think he can deliver
He was that good when he was young that everything was too easy for him. To then make the step from a high level it is a big step and if you haven’t exposed yourself down here, to do it the next day up there doesn’t happen. You have a lot of habits and those habits have to be taken away and replaced with new ones and he has done that very quickly, much quicker than I thought and that is why he has been playing
I wouldn’t like to compare, what I will say is that Reiss has the potential to do whatever he wants. If he wants to do it, wants to learn and wants to challenge himself he can be a top, top player for this football club. At the moment I think he is on the right path, with the right attitude and then there are a lot of factors. He needs to deal with pressure, deliver every three days, score more goals and make the difference more for the team because he has the quality to do that
2020 01 19 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta praises Martinelli’s determination to have an impact in Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Sheffield United] He’s an 18-year-old kid with all the enthusiasm but as well, he’s so brave to make decisions, to threaten the opponent every time. He’s all the time in the middle of the goal, waiting for an opportunity to come. The fact he hasn’t played 90 minutes for a while - since his injury - but is still in the way he went about every single action is impressive
2020 01 20 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta admits that it’s a possibility that Arsenal will welcome no fresh addition] Things haven’t moved at all since the weekend. There is nothing new to say on any individual players and when we have more info we’ll let you know
It’s a possibility, yeah. I would not be unhappy without anybody in because we couldn’t, it’s because the players we want to bring in have to be players that will help us and make a difference in the squad not just for the sake of just bringing in players
Everybody is having a lot of problems putting together back-to-back wins. The league has been very competitive this season and that’s why the gap is not that big. There is still another four months to play. A lot of things [can] happen, a lot of games between the top teams as well so I think that will change
[A midweek meeting with Chelsea will give the Gunners a chance to close a 10-point gap on the fourth-placed Blues] It’s very important if we want to have the aim to fight for that [a top-four place]. The game at home [a 2-1 defeat] could have made a big difference as well and we were very close to it so we need a win
2020 01 20b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta believes that star playmaker Mesut Ozil has been ‘unlucky’ not to record more goals and assists in his time as Gunners boss] The demands that we have to put on him are to make the difference every single game. To do that he needs the right structure and players around him to help him to do that. I think he could have had more assists and probably more goals in the games he has played under me which has been a little bit unlucky but overall I think that his performance has improved a lot
[Martinelli representing Italy] would be ideal. It is up to him. He has his feelings and he needs to make his decision of what he wants. It is up to entirely him. But if he can play around the corner it would be even better. His mentality makes a big difference. I don’t know how the process when he joined and what he did to settle so quickly. But I can imagine he has the right people around him for sure, his family and entourage, and I think as well they really look after him and I think the club were very on top of him and positive about everything about him and his teammates were a big help
2020 01 21 Retrieve
[Twice they came from behind at Chelsea to salvage a 2-2 draw, all whilst playing with 10 men for more than an hour after David Luiz had been sent off. However, at the last moment, Arteta changed his mind. Holding was sent back to the bench and Martinelli stayed on] I was thinking about that, but I don’t want to send that message to the team. I am [proud of the players]. The spirit they showed, the character, the fight and the leadership as well
2020 01 21b Retrieve
[Arsenal claims an impressive 2-2 draw with Chelsea] Time will tell if this is a stepping stone, but at least I saw a reaction. I demand from the players that they never give up, we have to keep playing with the spirit we showed in every game. I’m proud of the way they reacted. They stepped up - if a teammate makes a mistake they have to have their back. It’s a good point in the end
2020 01 21c Retrieve
[Arsenal need much more from Mesut Ozil] The demands that we have to put on Mesut Ozil are to make the difference every single game. He needs the right structure and players around him to help him to do that. I think he could have had more assists and probably more goals in the games he has played under me. He has been a little bit unlucky but overall I think that his performance has improved a lot
2020 01 22 Retrieve
[Arteta praises Martinelli’s ‘courage’ after helping Arsenal to Chelsea draw] To play in this stadium the way he has done with 10 men and against Azpilicueta, who in my opinion is one of the best defenders in the league, and he was going against him every single time, you need courage to do that. Then his energy. I wanted to take him off a few times because he looked knackered, he was cramping and next minute he’s sprinting 60 yards again. Not just him. I think Laca [Alexandre Lacazette] is playing at a really good level, even though he’s not scoring, and Nico [Nicolas Pepe] as well, and everybody that’s coming in. They are fighting really hard in training to try to convince us to play more. When they question some things I tell them [to] speak on the pitch and this is to speak on the pitch
[Arteta was forced to deploy Granit Xhaka in defence after losing David Luiz] I tried to convince him that this was the right place for him to stay, that I wanted to give him the opportunity to try to enjoy playing football again and everything I ask him to do, every training session he is willing to do it. Today I knew, the moment I put him there, I didn’t know how good he was going to do but he was going to put everything out there, and he was great
2020 01 23 Retrieve
[Dani Ceballos looking to cut Arsenal loan spell short this month] Dani had an injury where he was out for almost two months and had to go to Madrid for his rehab. He came back and in the first few weeks, I didn’t think that he was physically at the level to compete for starting games
It’s true that I have players in that position who have been performing really well, and last week when I believed that he was ready to step in, I decided to pick another player. But he’s been training good, I’m happy with him and I know him really well, so there’s no issues there
2020 01 23b Retrieve
[Speaking about his plans for Dani Ceballos earlier this month] I know him really well from Spain. I watched him many, many times. He always wants the ball, he has big personality to play. I like him, he is a player that can fit our style and now he needs to make a step forward and make things difficult for me and my selection
It’s true that I have players in that position who have been performing really well, and when I believed that he was ready to step in, I decided to pick another player. But he’s been training good, I’m happy with him so there’s no issues there
2020 01 24 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says 50-50 Shakhtar Donetsk ace Matviyenko will coming] I’m not going to be discussing any links publicly. It’s true that at the back we’ve been short but there are other positions. At the moment I am 50-50 [on anyone coming in]
[Arteta claims to be in the dark about Ceballos’s potential departure] I had a conversation with Dani Ceballos. I heard about those things, but I have nothing to comment. He needs to get back to fitness and fight for his place
[Arteta went on to assess how much Arsenal have progressed] A lot of things that I wanted to implement, not just with the players but around the club in terms of the culture, I’m seeing very good signs in progress. A lot of things about our way of playing and style, even if the circumstances in some of the games have made it a little more difficult than expected. In general, I can see the direction towards what I wanted a month ago
2020 01 25 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says Gabriel Martinelli has to ignore praise for his Arsenal performances and concentrate on his development as a player] I would like to talk about potential, more than what it is at the moment because for him there is still a long way. The stature of this club, to give him the key to do that straight away is not fair on him. We have to bring him down. I want him to train with his head down every day hard and slowly he will start to earn the praise if he does what he needs to do every day, but it is not about one or two days
I heard a lot of things about Gabi before I joined and the moment I saw [him] in training, it was confirmed the things I was told before. I think the way he competes and how brave he is in every decision on that pitch is very unusual for an 18-year-old. He competed against one of the best defenders in the league, in [Cesar] Azpilicueta, and he got at him every time he had a chance. His fighting spirit is incredible and then he is a threat for goal every time
That is the risk and not just him, but all of us and me included and the club and the people around him. We have to support him and protect him. We cannot just give him the license to think he can do that every single day and he needs to do that and put himself under that pressure when he can maybe get blocked a little bit. It is completely the opposite. He needs to play with that freedom where he has the license to do what he wants to do on the pitch, but with the pressure really that it doesn’t always have to be him to do it
2020 01 25b Retrieve
[Arteta: Arsenal need to get back to winning trophies & will take FA Cup seriously] We’re going to fight for every competition that we’re involved in. I know what it means to this club to win that competition and we need to get back to winning. We need to get back to being up there and having everybody talking about us. We need every competition to try and do that
A lot of things [have changed] that I wanted to implement, not just towards the players but around the club, in terms of the culture. I’m seeing very good signs in progress. A lot of things about our way of playing and our style as well, even though the circumstances in some of the games have made it a little bit more difficult than expected. But in general, I can see the direction towards what I wanted a month ago.
I think that one of the important things is creating that connection again with the fans. It’s a long time ago, and these people have been here for a long time, [since we have] seen the fans react and support the team how they did against Chelsea [in a 2-2 draw]. It was incredible and in some stages. The amount of support they gave was incredible in difficult circumstances and I’m so proud that they’re feeling a little bit closer to the team now
2020 01 25c Retrieve
[Arteta was asked about the chances of Arsenal bringing anyone in before the end of this month’s transfer deadline] I’m not going to be discussing any transfer links publicly. It’s something that we are trying to do internally and when we have news we will communicate with you guys. We’ve been looking at different positions. Obviously, since I joined we lost Calum Chambers, it’s true that at the back we’ve been short. But there are other positions as well. At the moment, I am 50-50 because this transfer window is very, very complicated. I only want to bring somebody in if I’m really convinced that he can really improve the level that we have
2020 01 26 Retrieve
[Arteta confident he can fix error-prone Mustafi at Arsenal] Absolutely. It’s my job to do that. I don’t believe that at 27 you cannot improve certain aspects of the game. I really believe that you can. I’ve worked with players like this, I’ve had team-mates like this and there is always a moment where there is a click. There are certain patterns that lead to these type of scenarios [mistakes] and the more of those patterns that we take away, slowly they will decrease. I’m confident we can do that
I can accept a mistake, no problem. What I’m not going to accept is someone who makes a mistake and after he stops playing, he doesn’t want the ball, he doesn’t want to make decisions. That player is not acceptable for our team. But Musti after that [mistake] tried to play every single time, he went for every single challenge and he put his body on the line. He was down afterwards, yes, but he reacted and if he does that, he will overcome the situation. He made a mistake. Obviously we want to minimise that as quickly as possible and find the reason why that happens, but I like his reaction after that
[On whether Mustafi still has a long-term future at Arsenal] While he is my player and he is training with me the way he does every day, of course. The plans maybe in the summer were different with him, I came here, he is here and his attitude is always right.
[With Luiz suspended on Monday night following his sending off at Chelsea, Rob Holding could come into contention to start at Bournemouth] He is a very interesting player, very focused, very determined and very willing to learn. He is a player that is going to be very valuable for us. Obviously the fact he has been out for such a long time, he is lacking competition now and lacking that rhythm. We need to try to give him as much as possible to help. Sometimes the context is not ideal for an individual player’s needs. In this moment obviously we are in that position and we cannot do that
2020 01 27 Retrieve
[Arsenal’s defensive woes worsen as Shkodran Mustafi stretchered off against Bournemouth] When he is my player and when he is training with me the way he does every day, of course. The plans maybe in the summer were different with him. I came here, he is here and his attitude is always right and he wants to help. I don’t believe that at 27 you cannot improve certain aspects of the game. I really believe you can. I work with players like this and I have had teammates like this and there is always a moment where there is a click
2020 01 28 Retrieve
[When asked if a setback for Mustafi would see that recruitment process sped up] We are in the market. We are looking for some things with the resources we have and we will tell you when we have more news
2020 01 28b Retrieve
[Arteta’s young guns show transfers aren’t the only answer to Arsenal’s issues] They were terrific. And their work rate as well. For me, it’s the courage to play, to make big decisions, to not be scared and play safe – that’s the difference with these three kids. Eddie Nketiah again was terrific and Joe as well. I really like Joe in that [No.10] position. I think he can be an outstanding player playing there and he showed that
2020 01 28c Retrieve
[Arsenal squad set for training camp in Dubai during winter break] As we prepare for several key fixtures, we are looking forward to a change of routine with some warm-weather training. Dubai is a fantastic place and the football facilities there are first class. It will do us good to experience a change of environment before we enter a crucial part of the season
2020 01 28d Retrieve
[Arteta confirms Arsenal looking for reinforcements after Mustafi injury blow] We will have to assess him but when Mustafi has to come off, normally it is not good. We are in the market. We are looking for some things with the resources we have and we will tell you when we have more news
[Arteta was happy with 2-1 triumph at the Vitality Stadium display as the Gunners booked an FA Cup fifth-round trip to Portsmouth into their schedule] Very pleased. It’s always tough to come here and win, we’ve done it with a young team as well. I have a lot of faith in them. I think they are developing really well. They are willing and hungry and will only get better. We analyse opponents and try to generate situations that are favourable for our players. I was worried with their history in the last few weeks we would concede in the last few minutes. Our history with this cup is massive for the club. We need to take it step by step.
2020 01 29 Retrieve
[Arsenal boosted as scans confirm no serious injury for Mustafi. The centre-back was stretchered off after a collision with Emiliano Martinez as the Gunners beat Bournemouth 2-1 in the FA Cup fourth round on Monday] We will have to assess him but when Mustafi has to come off, normally it is not good. We are in the market. We are looking for some things with the resources we have and we will tell you when we have more news.
[Arteta, however, vowed to stick by Mustafi and fix the weaknesses in his game] Absolutely. It’s my job to do that. I don’t believe that at 27 you cannot improve certain aspects of the game. I really believe that you can. I’ve worked with players like this, I’ve had team-mates like this and there is always a moment where there is a click
2020 01 29b Retrieve
[Arsenal target Southampton defender Cedric after finalising Pablo Mari deal] We are playing with full-backs that are not full-backs. They are wingers or central midfielders. Could we afford to lose full-backs? No, we don’t have any
2020 01 29c Retrieve
[Arsenal set to finalise Pablo Mari move after breakthrough in talks with Flamengo] We will have to assess him but when Mustafi has to come off, normally it is not good. We are in the market. We are looking for some things with the resources we have and we will tell you when we have more news
2020 01 31 Retrieve
[Arteta warns Arsenal stars that no-one is safe] This club needs competition of two or three players in each position to fight. If they are able to fight and compete and they are better than the other ones, they will play. If not, someone else will play. Players are going to start games if they deserve to play and if they perform at the level of this football club. We have some necessities in certain areas, playing some players in positions that are not really their positions. With more time I would like to have specialists for every position to do exactly what we want to do. But Ainsley has adapted really well to that position, the same as Bukayo. They have been really helpful so they can still play in those positions, but naturally they are other type of players
He’s a very useful player with great speed and is technically gifted. He’s a good passer of the ball and can play as an attacking midfielder because he’s a threat every time with his runs. We’ve done so far the business that we could do, which are loans. When those loans come to an end and we have to make decisions, we will see where we are
2020 01 31b Retrieve
[Asked if there is a chance of another signing coming in] I’d like to say no, but you never know. We’ve been trying to be active in the market. We found two players who can be useful and we are happy
[Mari] balances what I want to do from the back and he is a player we have followed for a few months. [Cedric] has big experience, knows what it means. I followed him a few seasons ago and I like what he can bring. We will have more [fitness] results today but I don’t think he’ll be available for Sunday
We are on the right path. The two weeks after [the winter break in] Dubai will help accelerate that and I’m happy where I am. I want to take them away from here and live together more and train some concepts we haven’t been able to train
2020 01 31c Retrieve
[Top Arsenal transfer targets] We are going to try and be in the market to see options that can strengthen the team. That’s for sure and that’s our obligation and we’re going to be working on that
[Asked if there is a chance of another signing coming in] I’d like to say no, but you never know
2020 02 02 Retrieve
[Arteta demands improvement after Burnley draw] We have to improve quality-wise. We are very far from what I want in terms of sustaining attacks and being more unpredictable in our play, but that’s a process. We generated the chances that you expect here to put the game to bed. We didn’t do it. I was very pleased with the first 15-20 minutes: the way we came out, the way we controlled the game, the opportunities that we generated. And we were on top of the game. I think we had the chances to score one or two goals in that moment. After 20-25 minutes, we started to give some sloppy passes away, to concede free-kicks, throw-ins, corners and that sequence [is] very difficult to get out of that
The way the boys defended the box, it was really good. I think we have improved a lot in the way we have conceded [fewer] chances
[Arsenal will await news on the fitness of Bukayo Saka, who was withdrawn at half-time] We need to assess him but he was in pain
2020 02 02b Retrieve
[Arteta impressed with ‘courage’ Mustafi has shown since costly mistake against Chelsea] He’s been training really well and I think you could see today how good he was
[Arteta went on to bemoan the state of the Turf Moor pitch] The conditions were difficult, the grass was ‘this’ long. They didn’t put any water on it and that’s not a very helpful thing to play football. I didn’t water the pitch yesterday in the training ground so I was expecting it. That doesn’t make it easier to play. It’s their game, they do really well at what they do. It’s their strength, you are allowed to do it so we have to adapt
[on his side’s second-half performance] We adapted really well in some moments and not so well in others. It wasn’t about the grass, it’s the quality and what they do they do really well and we could not cope with that in the right way
2020 02 02c Retrieve
[Xhaka’s remarkable road to redemption] When I was going from Arsenal to [Manchester] City to start coaching and we were looking in that position, he was one of the players on my list. This is how much I liked him. I was happy when Arsenal signed him because I thought he was going to be a terrific player. He has got stuck in a very difficult situation that, I think, was growing and growing and growing and one day it exploded. Obviously it is difficult to change completely the scenario from where he was to a magnificent one. But I think we are in the right direction with him
The way we want to play, if we get him on board he can be a tremendous player for the football club. I like the way he is, the way he lives, his professionalism, and the way he trains. Every time I am talking, he is listening and willing to learn and he is a great football player. The way we want to play, there are not as many with his quality on the ball and the way he eliminates passes, and the range of his pass. I am delighted to have him
2020 02 08 Retrieve
[Arteta optimistic Pablo Mari will be ready for Arsenal’s clash with Newcastle] With Pablo a little bit more than Cedric. But we have to go step by step. He is a new player and I am sure he is very excited and wants to prove everything in three days, so we have to manage him wisely
One hundred per cent. We were always complaining or frustrated that the demands of games were really hectic and we didn’t have time to recover. The new players that we have, it is a great opportunity for them to spend time together with the other players, get to know each other, live together - the same with the backroom staff as well. I think it will be a very important break.
You can’t just maintain the same level of demands of pressure throughout 10 months, it is impossible. You need those breaks. We suggested Dubai because we have those relationships with our sponsor, but as well because the weather conditions are really good and the players like to come here. We knew most of them were going to come here and relax with their families and be ready for training. It is not just the physical side, it is a psychological thing. To maintain for 10 months this type of level is very complicated, so I think it will be a positive thing for the league
2020 02 13 Retrieve
[The issues Arteta now faces at Arsenal] I made a big review of what we have done in these five or six weeks. The things where we can improve, the areas where we have improved and that we have to maintain, that we cannot lose. Hopefully, we can make another step forward as a team now
2020 02 14 Retrieve
[Arteta backs Nicolas Pepe to shine at Arsenal and shrug off £72m tag] I hope we can see it from now to the end of the season. But if you go through the list of top players that have come to this country, how disappointing they were for the first ten to 12 months then how incredible they were for the next five years, I think we could have a massive list. It’s not easy to adapt to this league but he’s putting in the effort and he’s willing to do it. And it will come out
The price that we paid for him puts him in a difficult position straight away because he’s going to be compared to players of that calibre. First of all the team has to sustain his ability and give him as many opportunities as possible during games for him to be able to execute his qualities. The other thing is he has his own responsibility, that’s for sure. He has to be more consistent in his performances.
[Arteta admits that the winger’s confidence levels have suffered as a result] That’s part of the adaptation for sure. He was in France and was one of the biggest stars in the league. He made an incredible year, then he comes here and a lot of people didn’t even know him and you paid that price tag. So for him to put his brain into this picture and solve all this is not easy. And he’s a really young player
2020 02 14b Retrieve
[Arteta hoping for Bukayo Saka extension at Arsenal amid talk of interest from Man Utd & Liverpool] I am really happy with how they [young players] are developing. Part of that developing is to improve the contract and to tie them to the club. But that has to follow a natural process. We have Edu, we have Raul [Sanllehi], Vinai [Venkatesham] and Huss [Fahmy] who are in charge of that and I am sure we will do the right thing when players deserve to improve and extend their contracts
[Pressed on whether that process has already started] Absolutely. We have to plan and we need to know the direction we want to head and with that we need to bear in mind different scenarios and with that in mind, I have to tell the club what we need, where we think we can improve and where we want to end. And if we all end with the same thing, we put a plan together to try and execute it and make the process as short as possible
2020 02 15 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says Mesut Ozil is trying so hard to be the talismanic presence Arsenal want him to be] He has been unlucky with some of the times that he has put people through and they have not scored. Things like that would have made stats a little bit different. But you don’t go from where he was to where he can be in five weeks, I’m sorry. Even when you really want to do it, it doesn’t always go that way. You have to be so constant. But he is trying so hard and he is very willing
The team cannot have the right structure to support him if he doesn’t do some of those non-negotiables. If he does them, then the team can afford to have someone like him to make the difference. In some moments, he has come very close to what I would like to see from him on the pitch
I have been impressed with Nicolas Pepe because he really likes to play, he loves football. He’s a very shy boy who had an incredible season last year, but that was with a very different style of football, with a lot of space, with a lot of runs in behind, with a lot of freedom. Here, it’s different. He is surrounded by other top players and he needs to adapt to that. To come to England and do that straight away, being a winger, is not easy. I have seen players with much more experience than Nicolas Pepe come to the Premier League and for six, eight or 12 months, completely fail and underperform. But after that, they have come back the following season and become some of the best players in the Premier League
2020 02 15b Retrieve
[Arteta opens up on ‘long-term’ Arsenal project] I am convinced that we are going to do some great things together. We have every element that we need to be successful and take the club forward - and to do it in the way we want as well. It’s great to feel that the players are enjoying it, and that they believe in what we are trying to do.
Now it’s down to us to accelerate the process as much as possible, without killing the process but by winning as many games as we can. The first thing was to make those changes in terms of our culture, how we live together, some of the behaviours that I expect from players and staff and some of the values that we have to have at this club.
I think we changed the energy at this club. I think we brought the team and the fans together, which wasn’t an easy thing to do. And then, on the playing side, I think we are starting to see some signs of how I want the team to play, how I want it to behave, and the type of passion and commitment that the players have to show under me
It has to be a long-term project. In the short-term, we cannot achieve all the things that this club needs. It wants to fight now with the top teams in this country and in Europe, but it is not possible. We are very far behind at the moment and everything shows how far behind we are. We need to make that gap shorter and shorter. But it’s going to take a lot of right decisions and a great amount of energy and commitment
Without an identity, you cannot plan and you cannot convince a player to do what you want. How do you recruit a player if you don’t really know what it is that you are trying to do? How do you convince a player of the way you want to play if you don’t have clarity yourself over why you want to do it? That is the first thing, I think. You have to say, ‘This is the direction and this is what we want to do’. Then you have to convince the players and get them on board with what you are doing, and after that, you can start to build. But the identity is the foundation for everything
2020 02 15c Retrieve
[Arteta pleased with Arsenal growth despite lack of wins] Progress has been quicker than I expected. I’ve found out things I didn’t know when I joined and have had to address. We haven’t won [many] games but I have a clear picture of why not. There are many factors to that. We’ve got to start winning quickly. The next two or three weeks will dictate where we are in the last four or five weeks to challenge for Europe
We agreed on some targets, we’ve started to work on them, and hopefully you’ll start to see the outcome in the next few weeks. The players know how crucial the next three or four weeks will be for aims until the end of the season
2020 02 16 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta insists he is not conflicted over Manchester City’s European ban] We want to go game by game. Ten days ago I was disappointed with the draw at Burnley and everything was looking so far behind. It’s up to us, how consistent we can be from now until the end of the season. If we are going to have a chance going into the last three games, we have to put a run together
[When asked about Man City’s ban] We don’t know anything about it and we will have to wait and see. [It’s] Very difficult but I am not conflicted at all. I just want the best for Manchester City, for Pep, for the players. I am so grateful for the time I spent there. [But] I just want to do for Arsenal the best we can to achieve what we deserve
2020 02 16b Retrieve
[Arteta hopes Lacazette gains confidence after ending goal drought] I’m so pleased for Laca – the reaction of the players and staff towards him. He fights hard for everyone. He’s been unlucky. He will gain confidence from this and knows how everyone appreciates him
[Asked why he played Nketiah ahead of Lacazette] The message is clear. Whoever trains like they do and has the abilities to play like he did has a chance to play. Laca has been playing all the games and hasn’t scored. I told him the decision and he accepted it. I told him he would come on and score, he did and I’m so pleased
Bukayo Saka is doing really well. He keeps his head down and wants to learn. He’s peforming like a senior player. Dani Ceballos is a good example. He was injured and when he started to train I didn’t think he was fit enough. He completely changed his behaviour and trained like an animal. I thought he was the best player on the pitch
[Arteta was pleased to see his side’s response after half-time] After the break we started saying we had to start closing the gap on the top teams and turn draws into wins. Today was the first opportunity and we’ve done it. All good
2020 02 16c Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta admits Arsenal do need more from Pepe] The price that we paid for Nicolas Pepe puts him in a difficult position straight away because he’s going to be compared to players of that calibre. First of all the team has to sustain his ability and give him as many opportunities as possible during games for him to be able to execute his qualities. The other thing is he has his own responsibility, that’s for sure. He has to be more consistent in his performances
First of all he needs the right structure behind him to be able to provide the moments of quality and winning games. Whether it’s assists, goals, dribbles or whatever it is. Afterwards he needs to have a much clearer picture of the things that are happening on the pitch, why they are happening and how he can solve them. I think he’s in the process of doing that
2020 02 17 Retrieve
[Arteta said Ceballos was the best player on the pitch and praised his recent attitude in training] Dani Ceballos is a good example. He was injured and when he started to train I didn’t think he was fit enough. He completely changed his behaviour and trained like an animal. I thought he was the best player on the pitch
2020 02 19 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta on Matteo Guendouzi being dropped after training ground spat] I just do my team selection and the squad in regards to how they train, how they play, how they behave. Every week it will be different. One week it will be one reason, one week it will be another reason. It was about the way we train, the way we play, the way we live. I want the best players for the game and I select them in relation to what I see on a daily basis
It’s another big competition for us. We know the competition we will have tomorrow and we have to be ready. I am really excited. I’ve been watching them a lot. They are so used to dominating the league so we have to adapt and play the type of game the opponent requires. Collectively, they seem very alive with a clear idea of what they what to do. They don’t play in relation to the opponent - that’s what I like the most
[January signing Pablo Mari is yet to make his senior debut but featured for the club’s reserves this week] Mari’s commitment has been really good. He did well the other day and hopefully soon we can start to use him
2020 02 20 Retrieve
[Alexandre Lacazette scores late winner to put Gunners in control of Europa League last-32 clash as resurgence under Mikel Arteta continues in Athens] It’s tough to come to a stadium like this away in Europe and come away with a win. ‘The first 10, 15 minutes we suffered because we did not do the things that we talked about and the execution on the simple things was poor. We tell them they have to enjoy defending as well, it is a big part of the game and like tonight if you give simple balls way you better run back and get that ball back as quickly as possible. But they play with a big heart. It’ll be a different game at the Emirates, obviously scoring away from home is very positive but the tie is completely open
2020 02 20b Retrieve
[Arteta himself was full of praise for Saka after the match, stressing he’s a player that’s always looking to improve] Absolutely, I’m really pleased the way he’s developed. I think he’s really pleased the way he’s handling this situation because there’s a lot of highlights on him at the moment but he’s really humble. He’s always asking questions, meeting with my assistants and willing to improve. He’s a great kid and he’s very brave. He makes big decisions in the final third, he doesn’t hide and he’s got the vision and the ability to execute in spaces that are really tight which is a big gift
2020 02 20c Retrieve
[Arteta said when asked about Matteo Guendouzi’s absence and whether it was down to a disciplinary issue] I just do my team selection and [choose] the squad in regards to how they train, how they play, how they behave. It was about the way we train, the way we play, the way we live. I want the best players for the game and I select them in relation to what I see on a daily basis
2020 02 21 Retrieve
[Bukayo Saka is enjoying an impressive rise to prominence and he was effective again on Thursday] We try to put him in a position where we can surround him with the right players and in the right areas, as he’s not a full-back. He’s responding well and he has a lot of courage to make decisions in the final third, the most opportunities we created was on his side again and I’m very pleased with his performances
2020 02 21b Retrieve
[Arteta: Arsenal still have a lot of things to improve on despite Europa League win] We go day by day and game by game because in this process there are a lot of things that I want to improve, a lot of things I see that doesn’t allow us to dominate a game more and better to create more situations
At the same time, they’re playing with a massive heart and the attitude and commitment - the way they were tracking back, we have three players with cramps and injuries and they still carried on, so credit to them
It’s a really good result, to win away in Europe is very difficult. To come to a ground like this, credit to the lads. We suffered in the first 10 minutes, we gave a lot of simple balls away when we had the chance to open them up and generate the overloads, in these situations we gave the ball away. So, we could not generate any continuity in our play. After that, we started to have more control in the game and create the situations that we wanted and created some good opportunities.
In the second half, apart from the set pieces, we controlled the game much better defensively. We controlled the game in the opponents’ half much better, and we have chances to score more. I think we could have put the tie in a much better position, it’s still good but we had clear chances with top players and we expect to put the ball in the net
2020 02 22 Retrieve
[Arteta says Saka future is out of his hands as Arsenal board look to tie up contract extension] That is something the club has to get sorted. My priority is that he continues to play like he is doing and he keeps developing. He is always asking the right questions. He is a very brave guy. Every time he gets into the final third, he is trying to cause problems for the opponent. He deserves these chances, he is doing very well and that’s why he is in the team. He’s great for the club. If we can get players from the academy and give them real chances even when we have other people fit, it shows we believe in them. He’s responded well
[That role has seen him slot into a defensive unit alongside Shkodran Mustafi] I put my trust in him, I speak to him and try to understand what was happening. I try to give [my players] answers and solutions and then it up to the players. It is not me that plays, it is him that makes the effort and the decisions. So far he has been really good
2020 02 22b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says he can feel an ‘energy’ around his Arsenal squad] Honestly, we feel as a staff that the players are willing, are behind us and want to follow us. You try and convince them about what we are trying to do and they are doing every thing they can to always try and execute what we are doing. The energy we have together is good so I am happy
The attitude I want the players to play with is to confront the opponent. It does not matter where we play, we have to go there and we have to face them. We have to feel that we are ready to go, not just when we have the ball but when we don’t have it as well, with the same attitude and aggression. They are doing it. I can only praise them because they are trying hard - sometimes we can be better or worse but they are very willing
Every game that we play is going to have a big impact on the table and we are aware of that. The home form is going to be vital if we want to achieve anything at the end of the season. We have a short recovery [from the Olympiacos game], obviously, with the turnaround and that is why we need all the players available and fit, with the right mindset, because it will be difficult again
I played there [at Everton] for seven years and I still have some great memories, great friends and people that I love a lot. When I was appointed manager I had to go to Goodison and Carlo [Ancelotti] was appointed that day I think. It’s always special for me to play [them] and I’m really looking forward to it
2020 02 23 Retrieve
[Coach Mikel Arteta after the win in Greece] I’m really pleased with the way he’s developed. There’s a lot of highlights on him at the moment but he’s really humble. He’s always asking questions, meeting with my assistants and willing to improve.
He’s a great kid and he’s very brave. He makes big decisions in the final third, he doesn’t hide and he’s got the vision and the ability to execute in spaces that are really tight which is a big gift
2020 02 23b Retrieve
[Arteta doubted Arsenal’s ‘most important player’ Aubameyang before he took over] It was an incredible amount of work Aubameyang was doing. Before I took over I had my questions about him but he showed his commitment. I wanted him to show if he wanted to do it and do it physically. Aubameyang is our most important player, no doubt the impact he has in this team. We will have to convince him to stay with us
The best thing is the spirit we showed after coming back from Europe - three games in seven days. And coming back after we went behind. The resilience they showed after they were absolutely shattered
[He also praised goalkeeper Bernd Leno’s role in a backs-to-the-wall end to the game] Sead Kolasinac had a shoulder problem. Everybody was cramping. We could only change two players. We had to defend very, very deep. Leno was really good. In the right moment he saved us
2020 02 26 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says Trophyless Kane is proof Aubameyang is world class] Yeah, but Harry Kane has scored 30 goals and never won the Premier League, you know. There are a lot of good examples of players that do phenomenally, but unfortunately there are a lot of top teams in this country and only one wins the league. So you can’t have everything in life
Obviously top players are playing at clubs that are winning constantly, there is more impact on that. But we all know how good Auba is. It is remarkable what he is doing and how consistent he has been over the years to do it, which is very, very difficult to do. I think we all appreciate, at least at the club, his value and what he brings to us. I think if he had been top scorer in the league [last season] and won the league, then he would have been voted the best player for sure. You need both. You need individual performance and you need the collective side of your team as well to support that. That is where we have to make a step forward to try to convince these top players to want to stay at our club and be successful and be happy
2020 02 27 Retrieve
[When asked whether the Aubameyang’s transfer speculation could become an unwelcome distraction] I don’t think so. He’s very used to that. I can’t see anything on that. It is very difficult to replace a player of that calibre, but hopefully we can keep him and we don’t have that issue to resolve. We went through that [playing without Aubameyang] when he was suspended for three games [in January]. And we had a good response from the players in those games, but long-term if you lose him the impact is obvious
The club has a very clear idea of how he wants to develop things. They are in constant communication with players’ agents and they know the plan better than I do. I completely trust them on that
2020 02 27b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says World-class Aubameyang leading by example at Arsenal] I’m so happy with him. Obviously because he’s scoring very important goals for us but as well as a captain he’s giving a great example to everyone else. That a player of this calibre is able to work the way he is working defensively and he’s willing and happy to do it and I think it’s paying regards to him
[the 30-year-old has now entered the last 18 months of his contract] The club has a very clear idea of how he wants to develop things. They are in constant communication with the player’s agents and they know the plan better than I do. I completely trust them on that
2020 02 28 Retrieve
[Arteta: It will be very hard for Arsenal to finish in top four] Very hard because looking at the table we’re still far from the objectives that we all have, but we’ve been far all season from it and we have to keep fighting. The most important thing now is that the dressing room has to be strong and we have to keep going and react. First of all, I have to convince them about what happened in the game and why they are not through in the tie. If they continue to do that, there will be rewards like we have done in the last 10 games that we played
I just want to concentrate now on lifting those players and getting back the belief, and convince them that there is still a lot to play for, and move on. It’s part of this sport that a big disappointment can happen and it happened. We have to learn and react as a team and as a club
2020 02 28b Retrieve
[Arteta defends Arsenal following ‘cruel’ defeat] I don’t think [the players were complacent]. The players knew it would be a difficult game. It is cruel. It is a massive disappointment but at the same time I am very proud of the players. It would have been an incredible lift if we had managed to go through the tie. The players have my backing for the way they played but it is painful. It hurts a lot. We had a lot of intentions in this competition. It was very important for us. Emotionally it has been a very difficult game
We tried and tried and tried, we threw everything at them. They defended very deep. We managed to score though and we were through but then we conceded a late corner and it was another set piece. To attack against 10 players is a very difficult thing. I felt we created enough chances to win the game comfortably. It didn’t happen but we had to manage the game much better in the final five minutes
2020 02 29 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta supports Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang after he missed a great chance to send his side through to the Europa League last-16] He was gutted. Obviously he scored a wonder goal that put us through in the competition and the last kick of the game he had the best chance of the game and he felt very responsible about it. We’ll try to be right behind him. He’s been phenomenal all season for us and now the players have to support him, we have to support him. His reaction as well after the game - to face the media and the way he talked and everything - it was a very mature reaction from him
We were all very down, frustrated, disappointed. The first message to them was I am right behind them, thank you for the effort they put into the game, for the attitude and personality they played with and the way they reacted after we conceded a goal. They tried, tried and tried again. They completely deserved to win the game but there are aspects of the game that we have to dominate better if we want to keep competing at that level
This is part of our profession. We can fall and we can have disappointments. It’s about how we react individually and collectively. Then my job is to try to convince them that in the process we are in now there are a lot of positive things and as well things we have to improve if we want to be much better as a team. That’s the way.
2020 03 01 Retrieve
[Arteta: Families of Arsenal players have coronavirus concerns] [We are] not anxious. Obviously, we read the information, it’s all the time in the media. Our families are concerned. We have a lot of foreign players with foreign families in different countries so it’s something that is on a daily basis. The club and the authorities are in contact every day. We are following all the instructions from the club doctor. So far, the protocols we have been doing are enough but obviously don’t know to what stage it is going to develop. We’ve seen in other countries the difficult decisions they have to make around it to protect the situation, so we have to wait and see and be guided by them
It’s really special. It’s probably one of the nicest games and days of the season when you play the final day in England, at Wembley, nice weather and an incredible atmosphere. And you know, it’s a trophy that’s been very much linked with our history. So, we want to continue to be attached to that, knowing that on Monday night in Portsmouth, it will be tough
2020 03 01b Retrieve
[Arteta’s transfer plans could be hit by Arsenal’s financial woes] The damage caused by the club not being in the Champions League for the third season is really big. Financially the impact is enormous because the structure of this club is built to be in the Champions League and you can sustain that for one year or two, but then after you have to start making decisions. So we will have to make decisions one way or the other depending on the scenario we find ourselves in, whether we are in the Champions League, Europa League or nowhere near that. And we’ll have a very clear plan of what we want to do and depending where we are we have to act like this
It will be difficult but this is the situation we are in now. We’ve been in that situation because we haven’t performed as well as the other top-four clubs have been doing. That’s the reality and we have to face that reality face to face and try to make the best decisions. We don’t have margin for error with those decisions so they have to be very thorough and clear processes of where we have to improve and how we are going to do that and then go forward with no excuses
2020 03 01c Retrieve
[Arsenal boss Arteta warns players ‘cracking’ under English schedule] Something has to be done because you can see players are cracking and cracking every season. You can sustain that for one season, two seasons, but after three or four seasons you end up paying the price and I think the quality at some stage will drop. But we have a history, a massive culture, here with the cup games and to go against that is difficult. I think there are a lot of ways around it. We’re not going to please everyone with the decisions that have to be made. What is for sure is that, for players, it’s an enormous amount of games. The intensity is raising every single year, the level of pressure too, and sometimes it’s too much for them. If there is no change, we have to be allowed to have 26 or 28 squad players, which we are not allowed to do, and even more players on the bench
It’s very condensed and if any event happens that is not considered, like for example the coronavirus, then it will be even more complicated
2020 03 02 Retrieve
[Arteta: I have faith in Arsenal’s youngsters] It’s a difficult place to come but I have faith in these kids. They always respond and I always knew they would do that. They have to learn from the difficult moments and manage them but they have the talent and desire - look how hard they work. The clean sheet is really important and we defended set-pieces much better. We have pace in a few players up front. Reiss [Nelson] is a special player and can eliminate players one on one. He’s been out for a while but he’s back now and he showed what he’s capable of doing. I’m really enjoying working with this group of players. It’s a process. I know [people think] everything has to be today or yesterday but in football it doesn’t happen like this. I’m seeing a lot of things I’m happy with but there is a lot of room to improve
I’m really pleased with them [the youngsters]. I’m enjoying working with the players. They deserve a chance. It’s always a risk but they’re worth the risk. It was a great atmosphere and Portsmouth made it difficult. We knew we’d have moments we could suffer but we reacted and got control of the game. We got two goals and could have had a few more. Pablo Mari has looked good in training. He’s lacking rhythm but very good. There is a long way to go [in the FA Cup] but we’re on the right path. We’ll see what happens in the draw. We’ll keep going because we love this competition.
2020 03 02b Retrieve
[Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta confirmed that Lucas Torreira was wearing a leg brace] Lucas was very sore and is in a brace. He will be assessed in a few days and then we will know more
2020 03 02c Retrieve
[Money is going to be extremely limited for Arteta this summer: : A loss after tax of £27.1 million ($34.8m] The damage caused by the club not being in the Champions League for the third season is really big. Financially the impact is enormous because the structure of this club is built to be in the Champions League and you can sustain that for one year or two, but then after you have to start making decisions. It will be difficult but this is the situation we are in now. We’re in that situation because we haven’t performed as well as the other top four clubs have been doing
[that is why the FA Cup - with the winners guaranteed a Europa League spot - takes on such significance] It’s a trophy that we very much link with our history. We want to continue to be attached to that knowing that in Portsmouth, it will be tough
2020 03 03 Retrieve
[By now Emery had been replaced by Mikel Arteta, who had publicly challenged his compatriot to show him he warranted a place in the side] I had a conversation with Dani. When I joined the club he wasn’t here. He was in Madrid because he was doing his rehab for over a month with the team that owns him. I know him really well from Spain. I watched him many, many times. He always wants the ball, he has big personality to play. I like him.
He is getting much closer to the fitness levels that I expect from him to be competing with his team-mates. He needs to get back to fitness and fight for his place like any other player. But he is a player that can fit our style and now he needs to make a step forward and make things difficult for me and my selection
2020 03 05 Retrieve
[Arsenal to start Aubameyang contract talks imminently] We will have to do that at some stage before the end of the season for sure. I will see the intentions that we have, his intentions. And where we are sitting at that moment I think it is difficult to predict that context right now. For me it’s very easy, I want to keep him in any circumstances
[Arteta has been delighted with Ceballos’s form] We haven’t had any discussions about it. I’m really happy with Dani and what he’s bringing to the team right now. It took him a while after his injury to get to the level that he has and that I’ve seen in the past. He is performing much better now and that’s why he is playing more games
2020 03 05b Retrieve
[The Gabonese striker is yet to commit to an extension beyond 2021] We will have to do that before the end of the season. I want to keep Aubameyang in any circumstances.
[If Aubameyang were to move on then cover would be required, with Gent star Jonathan David identified as a possible target] It’s very difficult but I like everything planned. I have very clear ideas of what I want to do but we don’t know what the scenario will be (financially)
[Quizzed on an ongoing top-four challenge] Beat West Ham on Saturday and we are closer. A few weeks ago it looked impossible but if we beat West Ham it will be more possible. It’s part of football, we have to adapt. It happens to other teams, we cannot cry about it
2020 03 06 Retrieve
[Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta says he spoke to West Ham boss David Moyes on several occasions before he accepted the role at the Emirates] From what I know about David, and the people he has around him, he is always trying to evolve, always trying to get the latest thing to his players and his club. And he is not someone who sits down and says: ‘I used to do things like this 20 years ago and I am still going to do things like this’. I really enjoyed playing for him. I spoke with him a few times before I took the job. He’s always been very supportive
I worked with David for seven years. He will put a team out there that’s physical and organised. The thing I admire most is the person, the values, how well he treats people and deals with creating a culture and a chemistry. He’s extremely demanding
When we were in December nobody talked about Champions League. It was an impossible thing. It is not in our hands. If we don’t reach any European competition we know what the meaning of that is so they don’t need any more pressure. They don’t think too much about the Champions League or the Europa League - or the relegation zone when we were talking about that, which is a much worse pressure I believe as well. They are dealing with the situation. We try to help them to focus just on what they have to do on that pitch and the rest will come naturally
2020 03 06b Retrieve
[Arteta issues challenge to Saka & Tierney over Arsenal left-back spot] They have to compete. They have to challenge each other and improve. Whoever is best will be in the position, which is a really good thing for the team.
[Arteta insists he would have no issue with the teenager getting an international call-up, but also sounded a word of warning] I think he is doing really well with us. International level is a different level. It is up to the England manager to discuss whether he is ready to do that and what is he going to do with his squad. Whatever he decides we will support the idea and the player.
2020 03 06c Retrieve
[Arteta open to Mkhitaryan return] I always liked him. He is the kind of player who can fit in any team when he is at his best, he needs to do it consistently and that’s what we need to assess. It’s a possibility that we have and will consider
We monitor all the players we have on loan. It’s our responsibility. Miki is doing really well in recent games. We know the player he’s been, we know his past, and we need to have all the information to make the right decision
2020 03 07 Retrieve
[Matteo Guendouzi can prove his worth after big Lucas Torreira blow] Hopefully he can avoid any surgeries which is always very traumatic. He was quite positive. We don’t really know exactly the extent of the injury. He needs to see the specialist and we will know more about it. Hopefully we can have him before the end of the season
[When asked why Guendouzi had been left out completely against Newcastle] It was about the way we train, the way we play, the way we live. I want the best players for the game and I select them in relation to what I see on a daily basis.
2020 03 07b Retrieve
[Arteta: Arsenal ship hasn’t turned yet but VAR assistance was most welcome against West Ham] Turning the corner in terms of results, a little bit in terms of the things I want to see from my team. They were telling me now that I turned the ship around, that ship still has to turn a few times more to see what we want to see but it’s part of the process. It doesn’t happen overnight, there are a lot of positives we can take from the eight or nine weeks that we’ve been here but it will be down to the performances we put in and related to the results
[When quizzed on why Eddie Nketiah was favoured from the off again] I have two strikers at the moment that are making life difficult for me but at the same time it’s very good. They are both scoring, they are both in a good moment. I decided to play Eddie today for the type of defenders they had and the game plan we had but knowing that we needed Laca in the final moments (and) he was ready to do that. I saw it straight away the moment I was talking with him, giving him instructions on the touchline, he was alert, focused and I could see in his face he was really determined to come out there and score the goal like he did
When the goal was disallowed I thought ‘Okay, that’s fine’ then my staff came from the bench and said it’s a goal but then it dragged for two-three minutes and then I wasn’t very positive about the outcome. So, I’m very pleased with VAR tonight!
2020 03 08 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta dismisses the notion that Alexandre Lacazette would start against Manchester City because he scored in his last game] It’s not because of the fact he scored, it’s because of the way he trains every day. The way he’s trying, the way he played even when he wasn’t scoring. He’s always at his best, training, his attitude is top. The same with the others so they all have a chance
2020 03 09 Retrieve
[Arteta has plan to unlock potential in £72m Pepe] It is part of Nicolas Pepe’ development that he needs to open more doors and be more unpredictable for the opponent. He is working to give us more options offensively and will improve as he has the talent, an immense quality and the willingness to do it
I’ll show him footage of what we want and on the training ground I will make him defend in situations where he is full-back and I am the winger. He has to feel the moments when the ball is in a position where you are weak and, depending on the steps you take, how it affects the opponents. He needs to know where are the spaces for the strikers and when they want the ball delivered in certain areas. It’s all part of a process
2020 03 10 Retrieve
[Arteta’s Arsenal approach won’t ‘copy and paste’ Guardiola’s methods at Man City] It is a completely different context with the situations at City and Arsenal. You have to be around every character and person. Everyone feels things in different way. If you copy and paste, it is always bad
He wants to take more risks and wants to play the way he wants and it does not matter what, he will maintain that line. I never heard a player doubt ‘can we play like this, or should we play like this?’ They are all so convinced as he does not leave one drop of a doubt what needs to be done
2020 03 11 Retrieve
[Arteta believes fortune has not been on their side and is in no doubt that Arsenal must be at their best to get a result at the Etihad Stadium] Sometimes small details make the difference. I think they’ve been very unlucky. This is football. It can happen. We have to be at our best, that’s for sure, to have any chance of winning the game
[Arteta is nonetheless looking forward to returning to the club where he learned much of his coaching craft under Guardiola after retiring from playing in 2016] It’s going to be a very special night. I’m very excited to get back there. Now, I’m in a different position on a different bench. I will defend my club as well as I can
[The Gunners are eight points behind fourth-place Chelsea and just five adrift of United in fifth, a position that could be enough to qualify for Europe’s elite competition if City’s ban due to Financial Fair Play irregularities is upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS)] It’s still a long way to go. We want to go game by game. Three weeks ago, it was impossible [to secure Champions League qualification]. Now, it looks a bit more possible. The club is doing what it has to do and holding conversations. Hopefully, we’ll get a result.
2020 03 12 Retrieve
[Arsenal manager Arteta tests positive for coronavirus with whole squad set to self-isolate] Our London Colney training centre has been closed after head coach Mikel Arteta received a positive COVID-19 result this evening
Arsenal personnel who had recent close contact with Mikel will now self-isolate in line with Government health guidelines. We expect this to be a significant number of people from Colney, including the full first-team squad and coaching staff, as well as a smaller number of people from our Hale End Academy which we have also temporarily closed as a precaution.
We expect those who did not have close contact with Mikel to return to work in the coming days. In the meantime our Colney and Hale End training centres will undergo a deep clean and our other club sites are operating as normal.
We will work with Public Health England on the next steps in regard to our facilities and staff, and with the Premier League, Football Association and relevant clubs around our forthcoming matches in the Premier League and Emirates FA Cup.
It is clear we will not be able to play some fixtures on their currently scheduled dates. We will update supporters who have tickets for forthcoming games with more information as soon as possible. We are now working to trace any other people who have had recent close contact with Mikel. We will let them know what has happened and they should follow the NHS guidance which is likely to recommend self-isolation
2020 03 13 Retrieve
[Arsenal’s season in doubt as entire squad is quarantined after Arteta’s coronavirus diagnosis] This is really disappointing but I took the test after feeling poorly. I will be at work as soon as I’m allowed
2020 03 13b Tweet
[Coronavirus: Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta ‘feeling better already’] Thanks for your words and support. We’re all facing a huge and unprecedented challenge. Everyone’s health is all that matters right now. Protect each other by following the guidelines. We’ll come through this together
2020 03 14 Retrieve
[Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta would have continued working with his symptoms if it wasn’t the deadly coronavirus, according to his wife Lorena Bernal] I want to say thank you to everyone who sent good vibes, texts, emails and calls, really it’s been overwhelming. I understand as well that you want to know what’s going on. My husband is feeling fine, he is well. It’s true that he had symptoms of the virus but the symptoms would have never stopped him from going to work in a normal situation
He would have just taken an ibuprofen or paracetamol and he would have gone to work so really, it’s nothing major. Some temperatures, some headaches but that’s it. That’s his experience. My kids and I are perfectly well. Apparently the virus is not lethal. It could be for a certain amount of people but the majority are going to go through it with mild symptoms
2020 03 16 Retrieve
[Arteta’s wife Lorena delivered an update on her husband’s condition via social media over the weekend] My husband is feeling fine, he is well. It’s true that he had symptoms of the virus but the symptoms would have never stopped him from going to work in a normal situation. Some temperatures, some headaches but that’s it. That’s his experience. My kids and I are perfectly well
2020 03 19 Retrieve
[Arsenal provide reassuring update on Arteta coronavirus situation] You can imagine that as this fast-moving situation has developed, we have been taking extensive steps to ensure we keep operating efficiently while protecting our players and staff. Our training centres in London Colney and Hale End were closed for deep cleaning after Mikel’s diagnosis with the virus but have now re-opened with a small workforce to maintain the facilities and training pitches.
A number of staff, including Mikel and the men’s first team squad, are currently isolating at home. We’re pleased to say that Mikel is feeling much better. He’s in good spirits, doing detailed planning with the coaches and speaking to the players regularly.
The women’s and academy teams are also currently staying at home. All our players are looking forward to getting back out on the training pitches as soon as the situation allows. The players have been given specific training and dietary regimes to follow at home and are in daily contact with our coaches and support staff. As you will have seen from social media some of them are certainly embracing this changed new world
[Reacting to the Premier League’s announcement that the resumption of England’s top flight would be further delayed, until at least April 30, the statement continued] You will have seen Thursday’s announcement that the 2019-20 season will be extended indefinitely, and that the professional game is further postponed in England until at least April 30, 2020. We are fully supportive of this decision which was endorsed at Thursday morning’s Premier League shareholder meeting. Of course, we all want to be back playing football as soon as we possibly can, but only when it is safe to be doing so
2020 03 23 Retrieve
[Arteta feeling ‘very well’ after coronavirus scare as Arsenal remain in football quarantine] I’m very well now, I feel that I have recovered. It took me three or four days to start feeling much better and with more energy, to leave the symptoms behind and now, the truth is that I feel very well
[Explaining his experience of the disease] Everything happened very fast. On Tuesday afternoon I was feeling so-so and I went to see the doctor but he wasn’t there. I got a call from the board of directors after training while I was in my car and they told me that the president of Olympiacos had tested positive and everyone that had been in contact was at risk. I went on to tell them that I wasn’t feeling well and that we had a situation because we had lots of players that had been in contact with them [Olympiacos]. We had a game against Manchester City the next day and obviously we couldn’t put lots of people at risk without saying anything. I had the test done last Wednesday and I was diagnosed on Friday, when we had to communicate it to the Premier League that I had tested positive. Obviously all those that had been in contact with me had to go into quarantine, and consequently, games had to be suspended
2020 03 26 Retrieve
[Arteta details experience after recovering from coronavirus] I am feeling completely recovered [now]. It’s true I started having some symptoms when we got the phone call from the club to let us know that we might be exposed to the virus because of the owner of Olympiacos and in that moment … I don’t know, I felt something within me, that I had it.
We had a game the following day against Manchester City, so I made a decision and called the doctor straight away and I asked him to drive home.
I spoke with Raul [Sanllehi, head of football], [technical director] Edu, Vinai [Venkatesham, managing director], Huss [Fahmy, chief contract negotiator] and we set up a meeting together and I said: ‘Listen, we have a couple of players that have been exposed. There is a massive risk there and as well I am the first one feeling the symptoms, very clear symptoms. So if that is the case, all of the players and the people related to the club who are in contact with me on a daily basis are exposed. So we cannot make that decision, we have to speak to the Premier League, to Manchester City and we have to make the decision pretty quickly.’
Then you realise: ‘Wow, everybody can be exposed here, this is very serious’ and you start to think about the people that you’ve been in contact with and the other people that can be related to us. That’s when a bit of fear comes.
In terms of symptoms, it was a normal virus for me. I had three or four days which were a little bit difficult, with a bit of a temperature and a dry cough, and some discomfort in my chest. That was it. The difficulty is that I have people at home, three kids as well and I was worried. My missus has been through it and my nanny’s been through it. Thank God, the kids never got it. We are all completely fine now
2020 04 06 Retrieve
[The evolution of De Bruyne: An inspirational leader and Ballon d’Or contender] A few years ago he couldn’t have played pivot, because he didn’t quite have the capacity to transmit orders to those around him
Now he can - he understands the pitch, his team, the demanding, associative football which links parts of the team with passes and movement
2020 04 06b Retrieve
[Yet despite seeing Eddie Nketiah preferred to him, Lacazette was still given plenty of praise] I saw it straight away the moment I was talking with him, giving him instructions on the touchline, he was alert, focused and I could see in his face he was really determined to come out there and score the goal like he did
2020 04 09 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta planning ‘two or three transfer scenarios’ for Arsenal] I’m planning two or three different scenarios that we can face. Depending on one of those three, we will be able to do more, less or nothing. We have to react daily. We don’t know what the financial situation is going to be, we don’t know the rules, the timing, the window. There are so many things we cannot control at the moment
I went through a lot when I got here… I had eight or 10 players injured, and there were a lot of issues to deal with. The connection between fans, players and club was in a difficult state at that moment. We had to change that energy, the belief and the commitment from the players. I was very pleased because everyone was on board with what we were doing. We started to win three or four games in a row and there was a much more positive mindset around the place.
We’re doing work with them and we’re trying to engage them. We’re close to them and up until now, it’s been a very positive response from them. We cannot touch each other at the moment, but we’re having group and individual talks. It’s so important that we keep connected so they can see there’s a relation between what we’re doing now and when we restart training. They’re bored and as young players, they have a lot of energy!
2020 04 18 Retrieve
[Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has revealed that his players are in contact with a psychologist during the unprecedented coronavirus shutdown] We have our psychologist who is looking after the players and is always in constant communication with them. But as well we’re having feedback from different people and we’re constantly sending information and videos and keeping them busy. And as well, keeping them close to their job and close to the people that are related to their job, which is us and my coaching staff. But we’ve been having some really good conversations. This time has been really helpful from my side, at least, to get to know the players better, and we are trying to improve our relationship, our communication and the understanding between us.
We have a lot of meetings to try and plan the season. We might have one, two, three different scenarios and we have to be prepared for all of them. I’m not a person that likes improvising a lot so yeah we have to know the circumstances can change every week and we have to be prepared as a club to react to that and adapt. We have some time to review what we have done as well, and the things that we have to improve as a team and as a coaching staff as well, and have a big reflection on all the departments we have across the club. How they are feeling as well about what we are doing, how we have set up as a club, if they have any ideas for us to improve, and we are more than welcome to help them on how the workload can be better. So then we make sure when we’re back, we don’t know in which condition, how long we’re going to have, we make sure we hit the ground running
2020 04 20 Retrieve
[Arteta’s Arsenal baptism of fire] I get up quite early and I like to spend an hour or two in the office by myself. Then I start to make phone calls and start to organise work and start communicating with my staff, the backroom staff and senior people at the club. Then we have some lunch and after that I get back to work. I put things in place and have some individual meetings and some meetings with the players. This time has been really helpful from my side, at least, to get to know the players better, and we are trying to improve our relationship, our communication and the understanding between us
2020 04 21 Retrieve
[Henry? Vieira? Arteta names Arsenal ‘Invincibles’ he’d welcome into class of 2020] For example, someone like Thierry [Henry] would be great. Someone like Patrick [Vieira] would be great and some leaders that we had the back. We’ve had a lot of great players who have had great success with this football club. A player that I admired a lot when I was young was Michael Laudrup. I used to love him and the way he played.
I think we can get a few [from the current squad], just joking a little bit, but through the process, they are really willing to try and understand the game better and how they can coach as well. It is not just myself, but how can they coach each other on the pitch? A lot of them are showing a lot of interest, even if they are 18, 19, 20 years old. Obviously, he mentioned to me, David Luiz he wants to be a coach in the future. sHe has started doing his coaching badges already and I can see he has the attributes, the knowledge and experience to be a coach one day
2020 04 21b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta has picked out Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira as the Arsenal heroes of the past that he would like to add to his Gunners squad in the present] For example, someone like Thierry [Henry] would be great. Someone like Patrick [Vieira] would be great and some leaders that we had the back. We’ve had a lot of great players who have had great success with this football club. A player that I admired a lot when I was young was Michael Laudrup. I used to love him and the way he played
I think we can get a few (from the current squad), just joking a little bit, but through the process, they are really willing to try and understand the game better and how they can coach as well. It is not just myself, but how can they coach each other on the pitch? A lot of them are showing a lot of interest, even if they are 18, 19, 20 years old. Obviously, he mentioned to me, David Luiz he wants to be a coach in the future. He has started doing his coaching badges already and I can see he has the attributes, the knowledge and experience to be a coach one day.
2020 04 24 Retrieve
[Head coach Arteta admitted that the potential effects of the pandemic and the financial uncertainty it was causing meant he had no clue what sort of money would be available to him for transfers] I’m planning two or three different scenarios that we can face. Depending on one of those three, we will be able to do more, less or nothing. We have to react daily. We don’t know what the financial situation is going to be, we don’t know the rules, the timing, the window. There are so many things we cannot control at the moment
2020 04 26 Retrieve
[Xabi Alonso and Arteta are close friends] I knew that one day he would become a coach. He is coaching now at the second team at Real Sociedad and he will be a really good coach in the future, I’m sure
2020 04 27 Retrieve
[Coronavirus and football teams: Which players, managers and owners are affected?] This is really disappointing but I took the test after feeling poorly. I will be at work as soon as I’m allowed
2020 04 27b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta on Coronavirus symptoms] In terms of symptoms, it was a normal virus for me. I had three or four days which were a little bit difficult, with a bit of a temperature and a dry cough, and some discomfort in my chest. That was it
2020 05 05 Retrieve
[Arteta: I shouldn’t have to convince a player to join Arsenal] Arteta: I shouldn’t have to convince a player to join Arsenal. Everybody wants to come here and we have a really clear idea of what we are. It doesn’t need much convincing and if they do, for me it’s not a good starting point. If I have to convince a player to stay or to join us. To Arsenal? It holds me back a little bit. It has to be ‘what do we have to do? I want to play for that club and represent exactly the values the style of play that I want’. That’s the kind of emotion I want to hear at the start. The same with the players that are here. Once you finish what are the feelings you have towards the club? That’s what really interests me.
I felt that the energy at the training ground and the stadium wasn’t right for this magnificent club. I was lucky enough to play here, so everybody has to feel first of all in that way. There was a lot of disconnection and I wanted to bring everyone together. Firstly, for everyone to understand how lucky we are to be here, and then a very clear direction of where we want to be.
2020 05 06 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta has expressed his belief that Kieran Tierney] I’m really looking forward to working with Kieran Tierney and giving him the opportunity to play. His attitude, his commitment, his will; it’s incredible. I think he’s going to bring something special to us. It’s a shame (Tierney’s injury), but it’s part of his development. In your career, you go through these moments and I challenged Kieran to say, ‘Kieran, how are you going to react to that?’ You cannot feel sorry for yourself that this happened. Okay, the level of expectation now is a bit higher, you have to deal with it. You are playing with a top club, top expectation… deal with it. You have everything to be successful here, you have the best possible attitude that I know from a player, go and lead your profession and enjoy it and that’s it.
[Arteta also addressed the difficulties he faced at the Emirates] It is happening [the transformation]. Coming into the club in that moment wasn’t easy but you mention a key word which is ‘energy’ and I felt that the energy around the training ground and the stadium wasn’t right for this magnificent club. I was here and was lucky to play here so everyone, first of all, has to feel in that way. There was a lot of disconnection in many areas and I wanted to bring everyone together. First of all to make everyone understand how lucky we are to be here and then a very clear direction of where we have to be.
2020 05 10 Retrieve
[Tierney was singled out for praise by Arteta] I’m really looking forward to working with him and giving him the opportunity to play. His attitude, his commitment, his will; it’s incredible. I think he’s going to bring something special to us. It’s a shame (Tierney’s injury), but it’s part of his development
2020 05 14 Retrieve
[Reiss Nelson - The Arsenal wonderkids who could save Arteta millions] Straightaway, he caught my eye. I think he has been a little bit confused in the last few years – what direction he had to take, some of the decisions that he made. Now, I can see he really wants it and I think he has the potential to do whatever he wants
2020 05 14b Retrieve
[Tyreece John-Jules is highly rated by Arteta and is, therefore, still being tipped to make a big impact at the Emirates] When he was with us, I was impressed with him. His understanding of the game, how he links with the people around him, how powerful he is. He has got a goal in him
2020 05 23 Retrieve
[Gunners boss Mikel Arteta stated upon taking the reins in north London that he is looking for a proven winner to provide leadership and inspiration to those around him] That’s what I wanted to demand of David Luiz. He is a player that has won more trophies than anybody else in that dressing room. We have to use that in a very powerful way. I am very pleased with him. In the games he has played under me so far he has been terrific. His attitude in training, the way he communicates with his team-mates, his desire to still learn, it’s superb. I am delighted with him
2020 06 01 Retrieve
[Certainly John-Jules would likely be part of the Arsenal boss’ training plans at least if he returned. Discussing the young forward after his loan switch Arteta said] When he was with us I was impressed with him, his understanding of the game, how he links with the people around him, how powerful he is. He has got a goal in him
2020 06 03 Retrieve
[Eddie Nketiah again who started up front in Arsenal’s final three home league games before the suspension, with the Lacazette having to make do with a place on the bench] I have two strikers at the moment and they are making life difficult for me, but at the same time it is very good. I decided to play Eddie [against West Ham] for the defenders they had and the game-plan we had, but knowing that Laca, if we needed a goal in the final moments, was always ready to do that
2020 06 05 Retrieve
[With two months of the 2019-20 season still to be completed, Arsenal are currently working towards different transfer scenarios] I’m planning two or three different scenarios that we can face. Depending on one of those three, we will be able to do more, less or nothing. We have to react daily. We don’t know what the financial situation is going to be, we don’t know the rules, the timing, the window. There are so many things we cannot control at the moment
2020 06 09 Retrieve
[Since arriving in December, the Spaniard has had to deal with a constant string of games and would have been looking forward to the summer and working with his squad during pre-season to really get his methods across. But he’s now been able to use the shutdown as an opportunity to get to know his players, not just on a professional level but on a personal one as well, something he would have found tough to do had the season continued as normal] This time has been really helpful from my side, at least, to get to know the players better. We are trying to improve our relationship, our communication and the understanding between us.
2020 06 11 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta on FA Cup final renamed to incorporate Prince Williams’s ‘Heads Up’ mental health campaign] You have to create a safe environment for them to be able to talk to you directly without feeling judged, or [worrying] whether that’s going to have consequences for them, whether they’re going to play or not, or my feelings towards them. This is what I’ve been trying to do over the last 12 weeks, by trying to talk individually so they can raise those feelings, their issues, and we can build the club culture that I want, which is based on respect
2020 06 11b Retrieve
[Tyreece John-Jules joined League One side Lincoln City on loan in January, but not before making a big impression on Mikel Arteta - who had replaced Unai Emery as Arsenal’s head coach a month earlier] I’ve been very impressed with what I’ve seen of him in training. I really like him. He can do everything. He links really well on the ball every time he’s out of the number nine position. He’s got a really good ability to do that. He reads situations earlier than others and he’s a good finisher as well. Physically he’s developed in a really good shape. I think he’s a very complete player
2020 06 11c Retrieve
[Arteta reveals Aubameyang called him to request Arsenal stars be allowed to show support for Black Lives Matter] The thing that I like most is that it came from them. I got a phone call from the captain asking to do that. I spoke with the club straight away and we were very clear that we wanted to support their intentions, everyone collaborated, we created the shirt. It was a really strong message and it is more powerful because it comes from them. They think they have to support these types of causes
[Arsenal went on to lose the friendly against Championship side Brentford 3-2] We are trying different things. We are trying to give minutes in the legs to all the players. We have had to change a lot of players through the games. We are getting adapted to playing in an empty stadium as well and losing that energy from the fans. It was good, we played two friendlies and we are getting the rhythm, we haven’t played for a while. We tried to make it as close as possible to a real game
2020 06 11d Retrieve
[Arsenal boss Arteta admits return to Manchester City will be ‘strange’ without fans] It is going to be strange, I can’t deny that. I know everybody there and spent four magnificent years with those players and staff. I am really excited as well, I can’t wait to start competing again and doing what we love most which is to play football. It is going to be very special for me and I am looking forward to it.
We have got a good measure with what is happening in the Bundesliga at the moment. I hope it is going to help. Football is about passion and energy and when you lose that, it is balanced much more, but I know how strong they are and what they are able to do if they are all switched on so we have to be well prepared to go there and win the game. It better be right that playing away is an advantage because we are away four times in a row
2020 06 14 Retrieve
[When Mikel Arteta walked through the doors of the Emirates Stadium back in December to replace Unai Emery, there was plenty of work to be done] We all know there is a lot of work to be done to achieve that [competing for trophies], but I am confident we’ll do it. I’m realistic enough to know it won’t happen overnight, but the current squad has plenty of talent and there is a great pipeline of young players coming through from the academy
2020 06 15 Retrieve
[Arteta hopeful over Aubameyang’s new Arsenal contract] I think it’s our responsibility to make him feel that this is the right next step in his career. In order to do that he needs to feel valued. He needs to feel that he belongs to us and that we want him - and then he really needs to believe we can take this club forward in the way we want to do. He’s going to be a key player to do that. I think that [Champions League qualification] would help to persuade anybody, but we are very lucky to have the club that we have that a lot of players want to come and join. But it is not about who do we want to attract as well, it is how happy the players are here [too] and how convinced they are that they are in the right place. As well, it is our obligation to be fighting for almost every trophy and playing in the Champions League with this club
We have many discussions with Pierre, his family and agent. I am pretty positive that we can find the right agreement for all parties. At the moment I am extremely happy about the way he is performing and behaving. I think I have a really good relationship with him where we can discuss face to face a lot of things. So far, as far as I’m aware, I think he’s very happy at the club.
2020 06 16 Retrieve
[Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta told it will feel ‘strange’ to return to his old side Manchester City when the teams meet on Wednesday] I assumed he’d ask my opinion. I told him how I saw it going: ‘This is what they’ll do, so I’d plan to play like this.’ He liked my ideas and we went with my plan
[Arteta will also aim to use his inside knowledge of Guardiola’s approach in Arsenal’s favour] It gives me a very clear idea of what they are trying to do and what they will be looking to do. But it is something different to be able to stop that and as well to create the issues that I think we can create for them
2020 06 16b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta is pretty positive Arsenal can reach an agreement with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to secure his long-term future at the club] We have many discussions with Pierre, with his family and his agent. I’m pretty positive we can find the right agreement for all parties. It is our responsibility to make him feel this is the right next step in his career. In order to do that he needs to feel valued. He needs to feel like he belongs to us and we want him. He really needs to believe we can take this club forward in the way we want to do and he’s going to be a key player to do that. I’m extremely happy with how he’s performing and behaving. I have a really good relationship with him and we can discuss face to face a lot of things and I think he’s very happy at the club. We would have liked to do things much quicker but our hands have been tied with time and communication. These unprecedented times bring a lot of uncertainty
[Arteta says has seen no suggestion that his head has been turned despite his comments about a ‘turning point’ in his career] I think at the moment I am extremely happy with how he’s been performing and behaving. I have a really good relationship with him and we can discuss face to face a lot of things. So far as I’m aware I think he’s very happy at the club
[Arteta suggested the coronavirus shutdown had played at least some part in the slow progress of negotiations] In a different context we’d have liked to do things much quicker but obviously it is unprecedented times. That brings a lot of uncertainty. But things are getting clearer and clearer every day that we are a step closer to getting back playing football and we want to move forward. We are trying, as a club, to finalise the deals that are more urgent and are a priority for us. The ones you are talking about [Bukayo Saka and Aubameyang] - they are both really important, not just for now but for the future of the club as well and if the club has something to announce, they will do it in the right moment
[Players comfortable with low-risk environment] I think we have found the right balance, and the most important thing was to provide the players with a safe environment to work where they could feel where there was no risk, or a very, very limited risk, to develop their profession. I think we have managed to do that and from now on, the physical part is really good and the mental side as well has been a challenge over those three months. Now let’s see how ready we are to compete
2020 06 16c Retrieve
[Arteta issues Arsenal transfer warning amid Chelsea spending spree] The fact that we’ve not been in the Champions League for the past three seasons has put an enormous amount of pressure on the club in financial terms. We know our responsibility and the aims – and how much that would relax the financial position that we are in - but we have to go game by game. It is not achievable in one or two games. It’s a process over the 10 games that we have. We know the target, the difficulty of the task because there are a lot of clubs in that fight. We have to give it a go and believe that we can do it.
[Chelsea having already made big moves in the market - with deals agreed for Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner] We are trying to put a plan together to improve what we have. We haven’t been able to achieve the goals we have wanted in the last three years and there is a reason behind it. If we stand still that gap will become bigger and bigger. I haven’t come here to accept that. The challenge for us is to improve the players we already have and find ways to improve the squad in the right positions to give us the best possible chance to compete at that level. It’s getting higher and higher every year.
The plans I had [for the summer] obviously wasn’t considering the coronavirus and all the side effects that has, but we know what we have to do to improve the team. Whether we’ll be able to the way we want will be a different story. My focus right now is just to improve the team, get the results that we need to give us the best chance possible to get into Europe and convince the players this is the right environment for them.
[Arteta is hopeful an agreement with David Luiz] I’m really happy with David. I want to keep him here with us. He’s been a key role model for me since I joined. I like what he produces on the pitch. I like his influence around the players and the club. I’d love to keep him
2020 06 16d Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta has confirmed sorting out a new contract for Bukayo Saka is a priority for Arsenal] We are trying, as a club, to finalise the deals that are more urgent and are a priority for us. The ones you are talking about [Bukayo and Aubameyang] - they are both really important, not just for now but for the future of the club as well and if the club has something to announce, they will do it in the right moment
They have to keep developing and one of the biggest challenges is always consistency. They have been doing it for a certain period of time, for certain moments of certain games but to do it consistently for every three days for 94 or 96 minutes, that’s a different story. In order to do that and develop the right way, they need the right players next to them, with the right mentality, with the right qualities and with the right drive. That’s what we have to do, we have to give them the right foundations in order for them to feel free to develop, without the extra pressure that they don’t need in these moments and they cannot carry on. We don’t give them too much responsibility too early, because there is always a risk to burn them
2020 06 16e Retrieve
[Nketiah can help Arsenal move to the next level] We treat Eddie as an important part of our squad. We had to make an important decision not to let him go on loan again after the spell he had at Leeds. I watched him train and I was very convinced he was the right player for us to move us to the next level, that he can contribute in a big way to the way we want to play. He has been fantastic so far
2020 06 16f Retrieve
[Lacazette or Nketiah up front?] I have two strikers at the moment and they are making life difficult for me but at the same time it is very good.
I hope it is. We’ve seen we have got a good thing to measure what is happening with the Bundesliga at the moment. So it is going to help. Football is passion and energy, and when you lose that things balance much more in my opinion
2020 06 17 Retrieve
[Arteta ‘very emotional’ facing former boss Guardiola in Premier League return] It’s a very emotional game for me obviously but I am very excited. It’s been a tough few months for everybody. Everything, every protocol, is different, so we have to adapt and find the right motivation. Let’s find out how it goes. There are a few things that have happened in the last few weeks so I have to pick the team that I think will do well. Of course a little bit, we were rivals as football players and now as managers. We were together for an incredible three and a half years. I learned a lot from him. He is an exceptional person and I wish him all the best. We want to win of course. The best players will win. I cannot play unfortunately and he [Arteta] cannot play either, fortunately!
2020 06 17b Retrieve
[Arteta admitted post-match that it was a horror night for his side as he refused to throw Luiz under the bus for his performance] Everything went wrong from the first minute. Every possible accident that could have happened hopefully happened today.
David Luiz is someone that is very honest and straight forward. My opinion on David Luiz hasn’t changed. It won’t change because he had a difficult performance tonight
2020 06 17c Retrieve
[Arteta will return to the Etihad for the first time since his departure when his Arsenal side resume their Premier League season] It’s going to be a very special night, I am very excited to get back there. I have some fantastic memories, a lot of friends, a lot of people that I like. But obviously now I am in a different position, another bench and I will defend my club as well as I can.
[When asked what makes Guardiola so special] The first one is his values as a person, that stands in front of everything. The way he treats the players, the way he treats people, the way he looks after the football club when he is there, that’s the first one. The second one is the clear ideas he has, how he is going to implement them and the plan he puts together to do that. And after because he is braver than any other manager and wants to take more risks and wants to play the way he wants and it does not matter what, he will maintain that line.
[In just six months, he has built a strong relationship with his players] It’s been a challenge for all of us. It’s been a challenge since I joined, because of the situation that we were in, but I think we made a lot of steps forward. We tried to change the energy that we had around the place, even our stadium with the players and with the staff as well and I was very positive in the way that we were developing things. Obviously, we had a big turning point with the coronavirus and being away from each other for three months, but we’ve been trying to keep going in our direction, being close in contact and communication with our players and our staff and I think we are in a really good position to move forward. We have some uncertainties that we cannot control and we do not know how the players are going to respond now, playing every three days after three months off, but most of the clubs are in the same position so we will try to adapt and to make the most out of it. We don’t try to find any excuses. We’ll go for it and enjoy it because I think we’ve all missed football so much that we’re all desperate to get back playing
2020 06 18 Retrieve
[David Luiz to stay at Arsenal? Arteta says contract stance hasn’t changed despite Man City horror show] He has spoken in the dressing room. David is someone that is very honest and is straightforward. I’m sure he will talk to you guys and explain his feelings, but my opinion on David doesn’t change. The moment I joined, what he’s done for the team, what he’s done for me, it won’t change because he had a difficult performance
[Asked if his opinion had changed in regards to taking up the option to retain David Luiz] This won’t change nothing. For me, no. Whatever we’re going to do, or we did before today’s game, we’ll keep it internally.
[He also addressed the issue in his post-match press conference] I don’t know what will happen with his contract. I know what happened today, I know the way David reacted. As a player and a person I know him well, he can handle the situation. There was a reason why I didn’t select him from the start and he had to play because Pablo [Mari] got injured. He’s always going to try to give you his best for the condition that he’s at and he’s tried again. It didn’t work out for him or the team but that’s it.
Everything went wrong from the first minute, when Granit got injured and we had to change the plan a little bit. Every possible accident that could have happened, hopefully happened today and not in the rest of the games we have ahead of us.
2020 06 18b Retrieve
[The Gunners were beaten 3-0 at Manchester City on Wednesday night, and events off the field already point to tough times ahead] Everything went wrong from the first minutes when Granit [Xhaka] got injured and we had to change the plan. Every possible accident that could have happened hopefully happened tonight and not in the rest of the 10 games we have ahead of us.
[Arteta wants Luiz to stay] I don’t know what will happen with his contract. I know what happened today. There was a reason why I didn’t select him from the start. He had to play because Pablo got injured. He tried but it didn’t work out for the team. But my opinion of him hasn’t changed from the moment I joined the team and it won’t change because of a difficult performance tonight
[Arteta warned that Arsenal could not afford to stand still during the next few months while their rivals strengthen] That gap will become bigger and bigger. I haven’t come here to accept that. The challenge for us is to improve the players we already have and find ways to improve the squad in the right positions to give us the best possible chance to compete at that level. It’s getting higher and higher every year. The plans I had [for the summer] obviously wasn’t considering the coronavirus and all the side effects that has, but we know what we have to do to improve the team.
2020 06 18c Retrieve
[Arteta unsure of Luiz’s Arsenal future] I don’t know. We cannot forget the financial situation. The way that Covid-19 has hit every club and the economy in general, it’s going to have an impact. What the club is doing at the moment is assessing the situation and trying to clarify a lot of uncertainties that we have in the future. We have to make big decisions and time-wise it is difficult to fit them in with our needs. We are trying our best and the club is trying their best. It is difficult sometimes because it puts the player or our sporting necessities in a difficult situation. Again, we have to adapt. It is what it is. That is why I wanted to protect David yesterday. That is why I did not start him. But it’s a funny game and after 20 minutes you need him, a player who has had a lot of uncertainty in the last few weeks.
David is very open, he is a leader and I was sure he was going to speak in front of everybody [after the Manchester City game]. You heard what he said, he was very direct with us too. That is what I value from him and that is what I like from him. We need to be fair on him. Me personally I am going to defend him with everything I have because I believe in him. He has shown me a lot of things in his time here and his career speaks for itself
[Joorabchian hinted that the reason for the delay was down to issues behind the scenes at Arsenal] Don’t forget that we have accepted a pay cut, not only the players and the staff, to try to help the situation. I think it was an incredible gesture of unity and commitment from everybody working at the football club that I am very proud of. So there are consequences but the people that are running the club are very responsible and do not want to put the club in a difficult position. n order to do that, let’s analyse first how our finances are going to look. We know that we have to improve, how we can improve it. And let’s see what we can do to get the club in the position it deserves.
2020 06 18d Retrieve
[Arteta reveals what Ozil must do to win Arsenal place back] I have been very open with Mesut from day one. ce I joined I thought that he was fit and he was willing and he wanted to perform at the level he can do. The moment I see that he is ready again to do that, I will treat him like anybody else. I think I’ve been more than fair with him and I think he has responded in many games the way I want. That’s it
I said before that we started after the virus from a position that we have a lot of teams in front of us. We have to go game by game. Last night is over and we have to learn from what happened. We have to analyse the game as it happened as well, and be fair on our analysis. You can see the difference at the moment, in the process, in terms of the squad. That takes a little bit of time to get there
I think in the first 30 or 35 minutes [against City], we competed really well. We were a threat and we made it very difficult for them but at this level, when you give something to that kind of opposition they’re not going to make any mistakes. From now on, game by game, it’s still the same ambition and that’s to win the next game. A lot of things are happening between them. Let’s see what happens
2020 06 19 Retrieve
[Arteta’s £72m weapon: How Pepe can restore Arsenal’s fear factor] It is clear that his consistency has not been at the level that he can produce. Nicolas Pepe is the first one to accept that and that’s what I’m going to demand from a player of his level and calibre. He has to be producing every three days at the level that he can. He has to be a player that makes the difference, that is a threat, who generates fear in the opponents and gives us a big threat in the final third
It’s not easy to adapt to this league but Nicolas Pepe’s putting in the effort and he’s willing to do it. It will come out. The price that we paid for him puts him in a difficult position straight away because he’s going to be compared to players of that calibre. But if you go through the list of top players that have come to this country and look at how disappointing they were for the first12 months, then how incredible they were for the next five years, I think we could have a massive list.
Nicolas Pepe is such a nice kid, he’s trying really hard and you have to respect the timing, the way he has adapted for the first year as well. A lot happened to him and we have to understand that and he is willing and I’m sure we are going to get the best out of him. I’m convinced of that.
It’s about turning those flashes of skill into a consistent way of playing. His mindset has to be right all the time. He needs to win the game for the team. He is one of the players we have in the squad that has to take that responsibility on.
2020 06 19b Retrieve
[Arteta confirms Mari transfer intention after Arsenal injury blow] Yes. This cannot be affected just because a player gets injured doing his job and defending our club.
Ainsley needs to put his head down and work hard and show me every day in training that he wants it more than anyone else, he wants to play for this club and fight for his place
[Arteta admits he is much happier with the youngster’s commitment levels and attitude] Much better. We discussed that during the lockdown and he has changed a lot of things, a lot of positive things. He is a really honest kid. We know him from the academy and the way he has developed here and he has all the attributes and qualities to become a really important player, it’s up to him
2020 06 19c Retrieve
[Arteta reveals the key to Arsenal’s summer transfer plans] What we do today or in the next five weeks will have a big impact on what we have to do in the summer. We have to put a plan [in place] to improve our squad, that’s first, fulfil the ambitions that we have, have the right players to support the talented young players that we have. They are still in the very early stages of their development and we have to know that, but we don’t have time. The demands of this football club are huge and we cannot stay still. We have to change things, we have to improve them. The most important thing is not about keeping [the players], it is about improving them, convince them of what we are trying to do and get them performing and winning football matches
There is a lot of uncertainty in how the transfer market is going to look. You hear very different things and people are going to go all in, clubs are already spending a lot of money and others may be much more conservative and wait to assess the situation before they move. Our position at the moment is that we have to see and be cautious. Our ambition is still intact and I know from the owners that their ambition is still intact as well. We will try and do our best to improve the squad, maintain the players we want to maintain and move forward.
Some leaders appear when others go and that is the responsibility. We know how the dressing room has to be managed, what type of people you need. You need a balance and obviously you need some leadership. You are talking about two players (Luiz and Xhaka) that are natural leaders, but there are many ways to be a leader. We have other people that have to step up, even if those two aren’t here. It is one of the things that in our club culture has to be implemented and they have to understand how important that is as well
2020 06 19d Retrieve
[Arsenal rocked by injury crisis with Pablo Mari set to miss rest of season] He is a very interesting player, very focused, very determined, very willing to learn. Obviously the fact he has been out for such a long time, he is lacking competition now and lacking that rhythm. We need to try to give him as much as possible to help him. There were some moments that he looked really, really good. He is a player that is going to be very valuable for us
2020 06 20 Retrieve
[Arteta slams Arsenal for ‘unacceptable’ Brighton defeat] I am very frustrated. It is unacceptable the way we lost the game. We like competing and I know we have a young squad but still, we threw the game away. We had to put it to bed earlier
A very difficult one to take. It is unacceptable in the way we lost the game. The fact we missed so many chances, the fact we gave them a goal and we did not compete for the second goal. Where do Arsenal go from here? We have to try to lift the players. There’s a lot of things they have done really well but we don’t compete. At this level you cannot give those sort of goals away. This is the challenge we all have at the football club, to rebuild to something that is worth the club we are representing.
2020 06 20b Retrieve
[Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang angrily pointed his finger at Maupay moments after the goal and then a scuffle broke out following the final whistle, with Matteo Guendouzi grabbing the striker by the throat before being dragged off the pitch] He can say whatever he wants. I know my players and one aspect that they do not miss for sure is humility
[Speaking about the incident which resulted in Leno’s injury] I believe that no player has an intention to hurt anybody and I believe in this case it’s exactly the same. It was unfortunate. Benrd’s injury doesn’t look good, we have to assess it tomorrow to know what’s happening. We don’t know [if it’s a cruciate injury], he is still in some pain. We will have to wait until tomorrow at least to see how bad the damage is.
[When asked if he feared a possible ban for Guendouzi due to his spat with Maupay] I don’t know. I haven’t seen the actions. I have seen a lot of players just talking and getting together, but I didn’t know what happened. There is frustration at the end because we threw the game away. That is probably a reaction that can happen. But I always believe a player has no intention to get somebody else injured.
2020 06 20c Retrieve
[Arteta explains how Lacazette can win back his spot in Arsenal’s starting XI] Alex is a player that I always liked because he’s the type of striker that can do a bit of everything. He’s very talented in combining and linking with other [players], his work rate and the way he competes for every ball is rare to find in a striker - and then he has the ability to put the ball in the net every time he’s in front of goal. It has been a difficult season for him - for other players too - but we’ve been trying to manage that. He has a lot of continuity with me but he had that stroke where he was finding it difficult to score goals. I think in the last few weeks he looked much better, was a threat and scored some important goals for us as well
I just want to give him confidence, game time and the way he came on yesterday [in the 3-0 defeat to Manchester City] showed a lot of willingness to help the team and I am happy with him. We have two strikers that have to fight for their places and I want that type of competition in the squad. Everybody needs [confidence] and a striker probably more than any other player on the pitch because in the end, confidence is related to the amount of goals per minute they score. They can do everything well but at the end they’re getting judged for the amount of goals they are scoring. It’s the same for everybody but how do you gain confidence from the manager? The way you train, translate it into the way you play, or if you don’t play then you have the excuse that you don’t have the confidence, it’s always like this
2020 06 22 Retrieve
[Saturday’s demoralising injury-time 2-1 defeat at relegation-threatened Brighton] We haven’t competed like you have to compete in the Premier League. We gave the first goal away and we lost a few important duels afterwards, so I think it’s all our fault. It’s not about the character, it’s about how you compete in a Premier League match and it’s for 100 minutes in this case. It’s for every ball, it’s for every action and the moment you lose attention, the opponent is going to punish you. It’s not the first time it has happened and if you want to win football games consistently at this level, it’s a must and it’s a non-negotiable
[When asked after the game whether he feared a ban for Guendouzi] I don’t know, I haven’t see the action. I’ve seen a lot of players getting together but I don’t know what happened. It’s the frustration because we’ve thrown the game away and that’s a reaction that can happen but I always believe that a player has no intention to get someone else injured
2020 06 23 Retrieve
[Arsenal receive Leno boost but Martinelli out for ‘months’] Bernd’s injury doesn’t look good, we have to assess it tomorrow to know what’s happening. We don’t know [if it’s a cruciate injury], he is still in some pain. We will have to wait until tomorrow at least to see how bad the damage is
Right knee. Positive news after detailed assessments. Sustained moderate ligament sprain during Brighton & Hove (a) on Saturday. Aiming to return to full training in four to six weeks. Left knee. Sustained cartilage injury during training on Sunday. Further assessments and tests to take place in forthcoming days
We had some really bad news against yesterday [Monday]. In training in the last action he got hit by another player. He’s damaged his knee, the doctors are assessing the extent of the injury but it’s not looking good at all. How bad? We don’t know, but he’s looking at months.
If two players bang each other, or if what happens with Pablo on his own and a lot of others we’ve had in recent months, they are not muscular injuries. They are more traumatic injuries. But again, we’ve been really unlucky with that and we have to deal with it
2020 06 23b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta has confirmed Arsenal are planning on signing Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares on permanent deals] We’ve been trying to get the deal done because we are happy with what Pablo can bring to us. The club were trying to finalise the deal and I think the club will announce that as quick as possible when everything is sorted. I think there was some legal issues there to get done, but our intention still is to keep him
[On Soares] That was the plan from the start [to sign him permanently], but he’s been so, so unlucky. He was injured when he joined, then he had a fracture in his nose. He hasn’t played at all for us. But we think he is a player who will improve and help the squad depth so hopefully we can do it as well.
It is very complicated. The timing of it and some of the legal issues that are involved with that. The club is trying to finalise everything in the next few hours. We have no choice, we have to do it - and even more with the injuries we’ve had. So we are trying to resolve this. I am confident that we can do it. I hope so.
2020 06 24 Retrieve
[Arteta says Saka set for new Arsenal deal] I am very positive that everything is going to be done with Bukayo very shortly. The communications between the club, agents and the family has been going on for months and is very fluent. The player and family knows how much trust I have in him. I think he is just showing that every week and his consistency level is getting better and better. I’m so excited with the young players that we have. They just need the right environment around them to explode and Bukayo is doing that even in difficult circumstances which is even more merit for him
What I know about Emi is the way he prepares himself, how patient he has been and how much he has been waiting for this opportunity. When you do that, you expect when the opportunity comes to perform and put everything that you have done in the past into the next few games to help the team and make yourself proud that it was the right decision to stay, work and behave the way he has over the years in the club.
[When asked whether he believes Martinez has what it takes to put pressure on Leno for the No 1 spot] Of course he has. If not you wouldn’t be the No 2 goalkeeper at Arsenal. The No 2 goalkeeper at Arsenal has to be ready to play, not just to be a backup player and when you are needed, to make the difference for your team.
2020 06 24b Retrieve
[Arteta issues Guendouzi warning as he calls on players to respect Arsenal’s values] More personal issues or behaviours, I like to deal with them on a personal level, in the dressing room, and don’t make them public. Obviously I don’t like it, but I don’t like either to put words in the newspaper, or use somebody to put words in the newspaper for you to talk about what has been happening on the pitch, because if 22 players do that every three days that will be a circus. It’s not about learning, it’s about experiencing certain things and some behaviours that you expect as a manager, as a club, to represent each other, and ways to show frustration or happiness. We have so many different cultures in our team, they’ve been educated in different ways and I have to understand and accept that as well. But we need to know that we have a route, we have certain ways, we have some values and you have to be within that.
You can’t cut edges off players, you have to be clear what you expect and publicly as well, what they have to represent. But that drive, that aggression that sometimes a player has to show is part of why they are football players and why they are competing at this level
2020 06 25 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta has alluded to internal issues to explain the decision to bench Matteo Guendouzi on Thursday] Squad management. Whatever internal issue we have, we deal with it privately. The needs of the team and the football club are always the same - put the best players on the pitch who are 100 per cent focused on winning the game
2020 06 25b Retrieve
[Arsenal stop the rot as Nketiah and Willock reward ruthless Arteta] Until we start to win football games the Champions League objective is too far at the moment. My only focus is going to Southampton to win, to lift the players and for them to start believing again
2020 06 25c Retrieve
[A poor performance at Manchester City, one which happened amid all the uncertainty of contract talks, was not going to change Arteta’s mind] David is someone who is very honest, straightforward. My opinion hasn’t changed from the moment I joined the team and it won’t change because of a difficult performance
2020 06 27 Retrieve
[Liverpool’s ascent to become Premier League champions under Jurgen Klopp has given Mikel Arteta belief that he can plot a similar revival at Arsenal] They’ve come so far as a club and as a team in the last few seasons. I think they set a very clear club culture that they have been able to transmit to the supporters and generate belief. I think they have a very clear philosophy with the way they want to play, the way they approach every game, and then they’ve got some really good recruitment. Starting from the staff and the coach and all the players they signed, they are specifically for the way they want to play so congratulations to them
[Asked whether Liverpool are an inspiration for Arsenal] Well, yes, because they were in a very difficult position four years ago and they made a lot of right decisions – some difficult decisions, some unpopular decisions but the right decisions for them. They have been very consistent with their messages, very clear messages from top to bottom, and a ruthless mentality to go every game with the mentality to win the game
[FA Cup glory may be Arteta’s most realistic goal this term too given his side are 11 points adrift of the Champions League places with the Gunners set to face Sheffield United in the quarter-finals on Sunday] We are very excited. It is a competition that is very linked to this football club – that has won it more times than anybody else in this country. The players are excited, having the chance to go to Wembley even if it’s empty, it’s such a special occasion so we’ll try hard. We’re going to face a difficult opponent for sure but the boys are excited about it
2020 06 27b Retrieve
[Arteta warns Arsenal stars amid Guendouzi exit reports] All the players that are here, I am counting on them. If they want to jump on the boat, they are more than welcome and that’s always my mindset. I am here to help all of them to improve individually and collectively and that is my job
[On whether the meeting involving Guendouzi took place earlier in the week] As I said in the press conference [after Southampton], whatever internal issues we have we will deal with them privately and I am never going to make any of that public
2020 06 28 Retrieve
[Guendouzi out, Partey in? Why Arteta should cash-in on Arsenal’s ‘Golden Boy’] All the players that are here, I am counting on them. If they want to jump on the boat, they are more than welcome and that’s always my mindset. I am here to help all of them to improve individually and collectively and that is my job. Whatever internal issues we have we will deal with them privately and I am never going to make any of that public
To predict what is going to happen in the transfer window is impossible. You can see one or two clubs doing these sorts of deals, but the rest is really, really quiet. We have to assess the financial situation that we have. The results and where we finish in the season will dictate whether we have a narrow gap or a bigger gap to do any deals
2020 06 28b Retrieve
[Arsenal record signing Pepe has finally clicked for the Gunners] I’m very excited about what he’s bringing to the team. I think he has made a click, I think he realises what he needs to do for the team as well when we don’t have the ball. I’m so pleased today, if you see his defensive action it’s incredible what he was doing, and then with the ball he gives us the creativity, the flair that big teams need. He’s always unpredictable when he has the ball. He is going in the right direction.
I really like him. From the past, I didn’t know him personally but I think he is a player with incredible potential, but he needs to be decisive in every game. He needs to take care of moments in the game when he disconnects himself a little bit and he can’t do that. I will be very persistent with him to try and change that because if he is at his best he is a player who can make the difference for the team
It’s very important to try to understand the player, his feelings, how hard it has been for him to adapt to a new country and a language that he doesn’t understand and he cannot speak to his team-mates. But he is very willing, he’s such nice boy, he’s always smiling, he’s always positive around everybody. He’s a bit of a free spirit, but that’s good because you need those kind of characters in your team and now he’s showing his commitment to us. I don’t know how he was feeling before, we just try to produce the right environment for players and treat them a little bit individually for their needs. Hopefully we are in the right direction with Nicolas Pepe and he can feel he has our total support and the only aim for us to to try and improve him and make him decisive for the team
2020 06 28c Retrieve
[Arteta delighted with ‘evolving’ Arsenal youngsters after sealing FA Cup semi-final spot] They [Arsenal’s young players] are evolving and they are really willing and finding a lot of personality to play. You can see the way they played and Eddie [Nketiah] as well the way he came on and fights with everybody, he doesn’t care. I really like that
[After back-to-back defeats to resume their halted Premier League season, Arsenal have rebounded with a top-flight win against Southampton and their cup success versus the Blades] We really needed that, we played four away games after the coronavirus [break], which is not an easy thing to do in the Premier League and hopefully we can get some momentum going now
[The Spaniard says Arsenal remain very much a work-in-progress] We still have a massive gap to fill in, we have to improve many departments a lot, we have to respect the process. It’s been really difficult, stop-start, stop-start, but we’ll get it right. I’m convinced of that, we just need a little bit of time that’s all
It is a great opportunity to try and win a title and play in Europe. It is a great opportunity to try and win a title and play in Europe. I knew Sheffield United were going to have moments. They are so good at their game plans and putting teams under pressure. We conceded form a long throw which is so hard to defend. But we were able to win the game
2020 06 29 Retrieve
[Dani Ceballos’ injury-time strike saw Arsenal squeeze past Sheffield United 2-1 in their FA Cup quarter-final clash at Bramall Lane on Sunday] I am really pleased. It is a really tough place to come and we got the result we wanted. We fought right until the end and I really liked the attitude of the team. They are really good at what they do. They put you under pressure all the time with their direct play. They put you in trouble. We dealt with that really well but you know at some stage you are going to suffer. We did but the reaction straight away was really good
2020 06 30 Retrieve
[Arteta issues warning to Arsenal fans over Saliba expectations] I know how high the expectations are on him for next year but we have to bear in mind the age that he’s at and what he’s done in the past. We have to make sure we create the right environment for him so he can keep growing as a player.
[While he was sidelined, Saliba spent some time at Arsenal and has been in contact with Arteta since he replaced Unai Emery in December] I’ve spoken with him a few times. He’s been around here a few times as well. We’ve been following him this season. Again, as a young player he had a difficult season with the injuries he’s had but it’s part of his process
[Arsenal have been in talks with Saint-Etienne ahead of the game, with the French club keen for Saliba to be involved - but the situation has been complicated as the defender’s loan ends on Tuesday, June 30] I think he needs to stay there, we’ve got an agreement with Saint-Etienne. He’s been all year over there, he’s earned his right to play that final if the manager wants him to do that. I think we have to give him the opportunity to do that, to enjoy that and we can have him after.
2020 06 30b Retrieve
[Arsenal manager Arteta still regularly seeks advice from Man City boss Guardiola] We have spoken a few times in recent weeks. Facing them again in the semi-final is a tricky one but look at the level of the teams who are involved in the competition. If you want to win the title, you have to beat the best teams and if we want to do that we have to beat City. Yeah, he’s a person that I have huge respect and admiration [for] and we talk about a lot of things. When I need advice or I want him to support me he’s always there and willing to help me. For me it’s great to have someone like him around
[Both youngsters are out of contract in June 2021, with Saka linked to the likes of Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool, while Southampton are said to be monitoring Balogun’s situation, but Arteta is confident of tying both players down to long-term contracts] I am not worried because I know that the club is doing their best to try to keep them. Hopefully we can have some good news about them very soon. They know my opinion on them and how much I like working with them, the intention that I have in the future with them. I see them really committed and hopefully we can find the right agreement for both parties and move on, because I think there’s a great future ahead of us with these kids.
2020 07 01 Retrieve
[Mesut Ozil: Mikel Arteta says Arsenal midfielder’s wage does not affect team selection] That (Ozil’s contract) is an agreement that the player and club were happy to do, to move ahead and it is never something that I question. I think players are paid whatever they deserve because there are two parties here and that should never be something I have to judge. I believe that he’s not very happy because he’s not playing. But as well he picked up an injury the other day and we have to wait and see how he evolves. I’m expecting a player that is not playing to feel hurt and disappointed. I want all my players at their best and to have the ability to be able to pick them to help the squad as much as possible and that’s the only intention I have. I know him really well because I played with him. Mesut has unique qualities. He is a very special player for the position he plays, how specific he is in the qualities that he has and what he can bring to the team. I don’t think much has changed. Obviously he adapted to the league and he needed some time but he started to perform pretty quickly and he established himself in this league for a long time, something that is not easy to do
2020 07 01b Retrieve
[Bukayo Saka: Mikel Arteta to demand more from youngster following new Arsenal deal] He is the player that represents every value that this football club stands for. He’s come through the academy, so big credit to everyone who has been involved in the process of developing the player and the person that he is today. He’s come into my hands, our hands, really mature, really focused and really well developed in his knowledge about what he needs to do in the game, and it was really important for me to keep him and have big belief in him. From now on, I will be demanding more because he can give us more and more hopefully in the future
Bukayo is a talented and intelligent young player. He has impressed me with his work ethic and attitude to learn and adapt, and it has paid off in his performances. I am excited to continue working with him to develop him further, and for him to help us achieve our goals.
2020 07 02 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says Arsenal ‘cannot’ sell best players] We don’t know how the market is going to be. Obviously we are putting different plans together to see what we are going to be able to do. At the moment the uncertainty is still big, as well the way we are going to finish the season is going to dictate things financially as well. So we have to be a bit patient and see what happens. We’ve seen different things. The way that Chelsea is dealing with the market is different to the rest at the moment, but Bayern Munich as well, they’ve been really aggressive. But if you ask me, we cannot be a team that has to sell his player to try and bring in and improve his squad - that’s for sure
When we played with Robin he used to be the difference for us every week. I always say that he’s probably the striker I have enjoyed most playing with because of his intelligence, the overall quality to play in any position and area of the field, and as well the quality of his finishing and movement. But now we have the luck of having Auba - a player that can do that in any moment of the game and we have to feed him and put him in the right position as much as possible in the games to help us win as many
2020 07 02b Retrieve
[Wigner Adama Traore has played a key role in Wolves winning all three of their games since the restart] I always saw an incredible potential that the moment he could develop or evolve in certain areas of his game, he would be unstoppable to play against at times. When he gets the service in the right moments and he gets isolated, he’s a player that’s so difficult defend. He’s showing that and he’s doing it in a constant way right now, something that for a very talented forward player is not easy to do
2020 07 02c Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang willing to stay at Arsenal] He is willing to stay with us. He is really happy where he is. He can see what we are trying to do and hopefully he can evolve as well some parts of his game he might feel he can improve. We are pushing him every day. I leave that to the football club and the senior people that finalise the contracts. Auba knows really well what my thoughts are towards him and the project that I want to create, and how much he is part of that. And after that it is not in my hands
A player that is able to score as many goals as he has done in that short space of time tells you everything about the importance that he has for us. Players that can make the difference in any moment in the game every three days in competitions. That is a big task and he has done that at different clubs. [I hope he can score] at least another 100 but I don’t know. I am not a magician.
What he has achieved today to be the fastest to score 50 in the whole history of this club tells you everything about his mentality and the way he works every day on his finishing, on trying to help the team. He’s decided to be better and better every day. So hopefully we can keep him here for a longer period.
[Saka represents values of Arsenal] Well, I think he is the player that represents every value that this football club stands for. He’s come through the academy, so big credit to everyone who has been involved in the process of developing the player and the person that he is today. He’s come into my hands, our hands, really mature, really focused and really well developed in his knowledge about what he needs to do in the game, and it was really important for me to keep him and have big belief in him. From now on, I will be demanding more because he can give us more and more hopefully in the future
[Arteta hints at Ceballos deal] Both clubs have been in communication. I really like Dani and what he brings to the team. When I joined he wasn’t available because he had a difficult injury, but he’s understanding what we’re trying to do really, really nicely and he has big personality to play and take the ball in any area of the field and give us the continuity that we need as a team to control the games better, but as well without the ball. The running that he’s putting in, the tackles, every time with the interceptions, his desire to win that ball back and help the team, he’s improved so much and he looks a really good player at the moment
2020 07 02d Retrieve
[Dani Ceballos: Could his creativity fill the Mesut Ozil void at Arsenal?] I really like Dani and what he brings to the team. He’s understanding what we’re trying to do really, really nicely. He has a big personality to play and take the ball in any area of the field and give us the continuity that we need as a team to control the games better. But as well without the ball. The running that he’s putting in, the tackles, every time with the interceptions, the desire to win that ball back and help the team… He has improved so much and he looks a really good player
2020 07 02e Retrieve
[Arsenal boosted their chances of securing European football for next season with a comprehensive 4-0 win over relegation-threatened Norwich] It’s been a really difficult season since I joined with the amount of games that we’ve had in December and then the break that we’ve had in lockdown, but they are so willing and they are completely onboard with what we are trying to do. A lot of things that happened today will convince them even more that this is the right direction for us to take as a team, and we still have to work on many things like the way we handle the game in certain moments. We cannot give anything to the opponent and we gave that again tonight, but overall I’m really happy with the attitude and as well with their understanding of the game and what the game requires for them to control it and exploit the opponent as much as we can
2020 07 02f Retrieve
[Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta on Aubameyang] The way he works everyday he decided to get better. Hopefully he’s here for longer. He can see what we are trying to do and hopefully he can evolve
I leave that to the football club. Auba knows really well my thoughts towards him, the project I want to create and that I want him in that. I am positive and I will remain positive but things have to progress
2020 07 03 Retrieve
[Gabriel Martinelli: Arsenal forward signs new long-term contract] I am very happy that Gabi has signed a new contract with us. He is a very talented young player and he has impressed us with his performances, attitude and work-rate. We are looking forward to getting him back to full fitness and to watching his development at our club
2020 07 03b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta interview: Arsenal must build on progress in ‘vital’ summer] That is the reason why we do what we do. It’s good that these things actually happen in games because it helps to convince the players and it’s a reward for the effort that they are putting in. Those are the areas we want to press the ball, that’s how we want to do it, and this is how aggressive we want the side to be
I would still like to see it in a more consistent way, with more speed and more intent at times. But the structure is getting there, whether we are playing with one formation or another, and so is the flexibility, the rotation of positions, the movement and the patterns of play. There are some good signs
[Those signs were not immediately apparent in the wake of Arsenal’s losses to Manchester City and Brighton following the restart] It was difficult to handle, after three months of lockdown when the players were so willing, getting hit in the face straight away
At Brighton, I think at moments we played really, really well. We completely dominated and should have gone two or three-nil up. But then we gave the opponent the game in seven minutes. We cannot accept that. But the response was really good. We can never fault the players’ effort, how much they are trying, it’s just about competing in certain moments
From then on, we needed another step in terms of commitment, of aggression, of willingness, of trying to be better, and we won three games in a row against very difficult sides
[doubts remain over the future of Aubameyang - despite Arteta’s insistence] I know that the situation that we have at the club and the context that we are in, but the club knows my plan. In January, the situation was that we had to fill some gaps and give some stability to the squad. Now is the moment to make another step forward and improve the squad and the players that we have
Yes, absolutely. We have a very strong group [working on signings] and the communication is really clear, not only with [head of football] Raul [Sanllehi], [managing director] Vinai [Venkatsham], [contract negotiator] Huss [Fahmy] and [technical director] Edu, but also with the ownership about where we want to go
The margin for error is very, very small. The gap between the two top teams and the rest is really, really big and everybody is trying to catch up. The competition is between six, seven, eight, maybe even nine clubs now to fight for those positions, so we have to be very smart and we have to be very decisive when we make our decisions
I learned then how important it is that everybody buys into what you are doing if you want to create something long-term. We weren’t able to change what we had to change in the first season, but we were able to do that in the second season. We were very aggressive and suddenly everything clicked and everything changed
First you have to identify where you can get better, but then you need everyone to be willing and to make a big effort to do it, because the process can be very slow or it can be very quick. That depends on how strong you are in your decision-making, and whether someone is doubting because a few results don’t go their way, or whether they are even more aggressive, they can see what you are trying to do and they support you totally
[Backing Luiz, supporting Saliba] His attitude and the way he has behaved with everybody at the club, not just in easy moments but in difficult moments, tells me everything about the person. He knows the role he has here. You can ask any player in the team how he is with his team-mates, what he brings to the table, and how willing he is to do well at this football club
He made a really difficult decision to leave Chelsea with two years left on his contract. It was a complicated decision to change clubs in London like that. But he felt it was the right move and that is the type of character he is. I will keep pushing him, keep trying to make him better and stop his weaknesses so that all the positive things he has can flourish
[Mikel Arteta on William Saliba] I’m sure about how he is going to treat him, how he is going to look after him, how he is going to guide him. The young players need stable players around them with experience who have lots of leadership. The way David supports them is very important to us
I am excited to work with him but I am worried about the expectations because I know how difficult it is to play as a central defender in this country.
It is one of the most complicated positions here. The step is really, really big. William had a really positive season last year, but he has had a really difficult one this year with injuries. We know where the potential is, but to fulfil that potential every three days at the highest level is a different task
He is, in my opinion, in phase one or two of his development. He has a lot of things to learn but hopefully, we can give him the right environment to make that process very quick. I know the player. He has the right mentality, the right attitude, the right physique. But he needs to fit in and that’s something nobody knows until the moment he lands in that dressing room
I am always very optimistic. I didn’t expect this many challenges in the first six months here, but it’s part of our job. There are always a lot of unexpected things that arise. We just have to try to solve them in the best possible way, be positive and move forward
2020 07 05 Retrieve
[Alexandre Lacazette: Arsenal have to have contract talks with striker] We have to have a chat about the next step with him and get his ideas and his feelings. As I said, I am really happy with him. He’s a player that I’ve always liked, even when I wasn’t here, because of what he brings to the team: his qualities, his ability, his work rate. So let’s see. Now we are in a crucial moment. It’s no time to talk about a lot of contract situations. We still have time and we will do it in the right moment
I think we have to win every game and then wait and pray. It’s not about winning one game. I think we need to go game-by-game. A few weeks ago, we were really far from even thinking about Europe and now we are a little bit closer at the moment. So let’s go game-by-game and see where it takes us. Now we are on a good run, we’ve got some momentum and we’re getting to the crucial point of the season where we’re going to face the top teams in the next two weeks and we’re just trying to get prepared as well as we can. We know how important these games are going to be for the future of the season, so we are very focused and committed to trying to do as well as we can.
2020 07 05b Retrieve
[Arsenal brought Wolves’ charge for the top four to a screeching halt with goals from Bukayo Saka and Alexandre Lacazette giving the Gunners a 2-0 win at Molineux] I am delighted with the performance, with the shift the players put in, with the energy that we played, the fight for every single ball from the first minute to the last minute from every player that touched that grass so that’s why we’re demanding. There were a few moments that were good in play, the goals that we scored were really good as well. We have moments that we have to improve, how we manage the games and how we dictate the games better, mostly in the second half but we will get there. At least the spirit and how everybody approaches the game, they go full gas with every ball. It [the result] gives us a lift, it gives us momentum and it’s four wins in a row, which is not easy to do with all the situations and circumstances we have had. We will try to recover to go again against Leicester and try to win a game, that’s all we can do. This team is alive and it’s going to be alive when they enjoy to suffer together and if they are able to do that, good things will come up.
2020 07 05c Retrieve
[The victory puts Arsenal right back into contention for a European spot - currently in seventh and three points behind Wolves - and Mikel Arteta was delighted with the fight his side showed on Saturday] I am delighted with the performance, with the shift the players put in, with the energy that we played, the fight for every single ball from the first minute to the last minute from every player that touched that grass. That’s what we’re demanding. There were a few moments that were good in play, the goals that we scored were really good as well. We have moments that we have to improve, how we manage the games and how we dictate the games better, mostly in the second half but we will get there. At least the spirit and how everybody approaches the game, they go full gas with every ball. It [the result] gives us a lift, it gives us momentum and it’s four wins in a row, which is not easy to do with all the situations and circumstances we have had. We will try to recover to go again against Leicester and try to win a game, that’s all we can do
This team is alive and it’s going to be alive when they enjoy to suffer together and if they are able to do that, good things will come up
[Speaking about Saka] It was a difficult first half in that position I asked him to play, he struggled a little bit. But he found the right moment and that’s what he can do. Every time he’s in the box, he’s a very dangerous player and he got rewarded with a goal, he didn’t put his head down, he kept working and helped the team to win the points
2020 07 07 Retrieve
[Dani Ceballos: Mikel Arteta keen to keep on-loan Real Madrid midfielder at Arsenal] I am really happy with him. I love how much he likes to play football, the passion he puts into every training session and in every game. His celebrations, whether he’s on the pitch or on the bench, he puts his life into it. I am really happy with him. I love how much he likes to play football, the passion he puts into every training session and in every game
He’s evolving the right way and has become a really important player for us.
We are talking to the club - obviously we don’t own the player, it’s not in our hands. The clubs need to have communication and see what we can do
2020 07 08 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta: Arsenal boss angered by Eddie Nketiah’s dismissal and Jamie Vardy let-off] I am extremely proud of the team - the way we played, against this type of opposition, and how dominant we were. In the first half we should have gone three- or four-nil up and killed the game. With the red card decision, he doesn’t see the player and you have to know that he is a young kid. But if that is a red card then Leicester have to play with 10 men after 42 minutes. That has to be a red card as well [Arteta was referring to a clash between Vardy and Shkodran Mustafi in which the Leicester striker struck the Arsenal defender with a flailing boot just above the eye]
[Arteta added in his post-match press conference] If we review incidents of that type, we review them all. It has to be something equal for everybody because it changes the game completely. If Eddie is a red card, then for sure the other one is a red card
[The Gunners had impressed before the interval, creating a glut of chances, but were ultimately made to pay for their profligacy] We lost two points which we completed deserved. We need to learn. Against this type of opposition, when you have them you have to kill them
2020 07 08b Retrieve
[Jamie Vardy’s late goal helped Leicester to snatch a late 1-1 draw against 10-man Arsenal with VAR once again playing its part] I am extremely proud of the team - the way we played, against this type of opposition, and how dominant we were. In the first half we should have gone three or four-nil up and killed the game. With the red card decision, he doesn’t see the player and you have to know that he is a young kid. But if that is a red card then Leicester have to play with 10 men after 42 minutes [when Vardy caught Shkodran Mustafi in the face with a stray foot]. That has to be a red card as well. We lost two points which we completed deserved. We need to learn. Against this type of opposition, when you have them you have to kill them
[Arsenal of old might have crumbled after Vardy’s leveller, there was certainly no lack of fight as they battled to hold on for a point] You can see the effort, the intensity and the quality that the players are putting in. That’s why I’m extremely proud of them
2020 07 09 Retrieve
[Signs of progress for Arsenal] You can see the effort, the intensity and the quality that the players are putting in. That’s why I’m extremely proud of them
2020 07 09b Retrieve
[Arsenal fail with Eddie Nketiah red card appeal after sending off in Leicester draw] With the red card decision, he doesn’t see the player and you have to know that he is a young kid. But if that is a red card then Leicester have to play with 10 men after 42 minutes. That [Vardy’s challenge] has to be a red card as well
2020 07 10 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta: Arsenal boss says Jose Mourinho is still a world class manager] Absolutely [he’s still a world class manager]. They have had some up and downs, but overall you can clearly see what he wants to bring to the club. He manages the energy, the momentum and established a really strong culture in strong football club that does it. I have huge respect for Jose and what he’s trying to do. He makes sure that he wins and he has won at every single club he has been. I’m sure he will be successful. It will take him a bit of time. He has a very clear way of playing and how he manages games. Clean sheets is a big part of what he wants to do. They have had a lot of injuries, that’s a big disadvantage that they have. I know that he has done it [before]. I know people who have worked with him, he always finds a way to be successful. I’m sure he will do it again
[Mourinho can end Spurs’ trophyless run] Yes, but they have been really close. They have come so far as a club and as a team and they have been competing with top teams in Champions League finals, which is a huge thing to do. That’s probably one of the reasons that they have brought Jose in, because of his experience in dealing with those situations and having that extra edge to become a winning team
[Sunday’s game will be refereed by Michael Oliver, the VAR official who came under fire from Mourinho after he ruled out a Harry Kane goal against Sheffield United last week] I never have any concern about the decision of the referee. Nowadays, everything’s so professional, dedicated and they’re under so much pressure and criticism. I know they try their best with the decisions that they have to make. They’re getting more and more complicated because of the speed of the game and how quickly they have to react, and the pressure they have with the new VAR system as well. We’re here to support them, we need them, they’re a big part of that. Now we complain that we don’t have the fans and we realise how important they are, maybe one day we won’t have referees and we’re going to say, ‘Wow, they were crucial for this game to work’.
2020 07 11 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta happy to help Kieran Tierney settle in at Arsenal] I am very impressed with him. Just how he was acting and working on his rehab. Everybody loves him at the club and it is not a coincidence, he earns that every single day: the way he treats people, the way he works around the way, the energy he brings to the place. Then with his performances I am delighted. He has adapted really well. He is a player that gives you everything in every session and every game and the quality as well that he is adding. You help him with pleasure because of what he brings, how willing he is all the time to work, improve and give his maximum to the team
He had a really difficult period because of the injuries, because he moved to a different city, a different context that he had in Glasgow with a club that was winning all the time and where he was very settled. It was a challenge for him. He has been dealing with that in the best possible way, with some difficulties. He needed the club to support him, he needed his team-mates to make life easier for him. We are all trying to help him.
2020 07 12 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta rues defeat to Spurs as Jose Mourinho sets sights on Europa League] We are really sad, we wanted to give our fans a moment of glory and happiness. We tried our best, I am really proud of my players. I’ve never seen us play like this before, dominating an opponent as much as we did today. But we gave them a goal again, conceded at a set-piece and at that level you cannot do that. The game was ours, we had total control. They didn’t generate anything, every time we pressed, they couldn’t come out ball after ball. It’s difficult to attack a low block like this, but we created enough chances. But the small details cost us and that is the biggest part we have to address as a team. We will keep trying to improve and coach the players to get that [the mistakes] out of their head. It happened today and when it happens in big games the margin isn’t big enough to win games
We played the way we wanted to play, the way we want to come to any ground and put the performance we put in, to dominate the opponent. We will move forward and continue that way. It’s a massive blow, the players are gutted. You saw the effort they put in. We came here to win, that is the game plan we had. To lose it, it will take a few days to swallow that one because we know how much it means to our fans.
2020 07 13 Retrieve
[Arsenal’s progress under Mikel Arteta undermined by defence] I have never seen them nullify an opponent like they did today. but we gave them a goal again and we concede a set piece. At that level, you cannot do it. The game was ours. We had total control. Every time we pressed the ball they could not come out, we regained the ball. It is difficult to attack a low block like this but we generated enough chances. Again, small details cost us and that is one of the biggest things we need to improve as a team
[…] We will keep trying to coach them and coach them
2020 07 13b Retrieve
[Jose Mourinho tasted victory in his first north London derby as Tottenham came from behind to beat Arsenal 2-1 on Sunday] We are really sad, we wanted to give our fans a moment of glory and happiness. We tried our best, I am really proud of my players. I’ve never seen us play like this before, dominating an opponent as much as we did today. But we gave them a goal again, conceded at a set piece and at that level you cannot do that. The game was ours, we had total control. They didn’t generate anything. But the small details cost us and that is the biggest part we have to address as a team. It’s a massive blow, the players are gutted. You saw the effort they put in. We came here to win, that is game plan we had. To lose it, it will take a few days to swallow that one because we know how much it means to our fans
2020 07 14 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta says Arsenal will try to emulate Liverpool ‘our way, with our resources’] Obviously, it took them some time to rebuild the squad and to create a new culture, a new philosophy, and a game model that suited the coach. They started to recruit every single player in relation to what they needed and I think where they were really smart is they bought a specificity for every position that was required. And financially they had big backing and made some big signings, which completely changed the club. The context right now is different to what it was four years ago and the abilities for a club to rebuild something are more limited, but certainly it is something we have to look at, how they did it, because it’s a great example. But we know we have to do it our way with our resources, having in mind the context right now is different. But we are heading to be the best, that is my only objective with this club, and we have to find a way to do it.
if you look at the last games and the way they have played, and the line-ups they are putting out, you can tell they are coming here with total commitment and trying to win. The result they had at (Man) City (a 4-0 defeat), it could have been completely different, and you cannot question the attitude, the energy of that team, in any minute of any game. That is probably one of the non-negotiables they have and you can see that in every game
I believe it is important to have momentum going into important matches and in order to do that, you have to go game by game. We will assess how the players are - a lot of them have played crazy minutes up to now and we have games every two and a half days. But we will have the strongest team possible here (for Liverpool) and again on Saturday.
2020 07 15 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta: Arsenal head coach says missing European football would be a ‘massive blow’] For everybody [it would be] a massive blow. But a lot of things change and a lot of things of changing. And a lot of clubs that were always in their history in the Champions League are now not, so we are not the only ones in that situation. It’s never in the history of the Premier League that you had seven teams at that level competing for those places. These records are there to break, so it’s something that has happened, so obviously we need to know that there is a reason behind it. It’s not bad luck, it’s not one element or two elements. It’s a lot of things that have to be changed in order to accomplish again the level that we want for this football club.
[Arsenal defender Kieran Tierney in action] I’m so happy for him. It’s been a difficult period for him since he moved, just trying to adapt to a new club, a new city, with the injuries that he had. His effort, his energy and his willingness is paying off, and it always does long term. So it’s a very clear example that if you keep fighting, keep achieving your goals and you work hard and you are always humble and you are always positive and trying to help, things come your way
2020 07 15b Retrieve
[Arteta: City deserve Champions League] There is no question about what happened. They completely deserve to be in the Champions League because what they done on the pitch is unquestionable - and the regulators have looked at it and have decided that they haven’t done anything wrong. So, you have the two aspects that are really clear and transparent. They are going to be in the Champions League and they deserve it for what they do on the pitch and what they do outside the pitch
2020 07 15c Retrieve
[Mesut Ozil: What is going on with Arsenal midfielder?] Can Arsenal form a team around him? At the moment, it’s at the stage where you can’t do that. They’re not going to change the team for him. He’ll pick up his £350,000-a-week and everything is rosy for him. They have to come to a deal with him; maybe he’ll take £200k a week somewhere else. I don’t know how this gets resolved though. Does he want to play football? If he loves football, he has to come to a deal with Arsenal, but it’s easy to say that. Nobody wants to lose £150k a week, no matter how much you earn! Who is mad enough to throw that money away, no matter who you are?
2020 07 16 Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta uncertain whether Arsenal will receive transfer market backing] It’s a big concern. You can see how [Liverpool] build their squad and there is no magic, you need to improve the squad with quality, quality players. And we need a bigger squad to compete in this competition. That is the challenge. It’s a massive job. You only have to look at the difference between the two teams - it’s enormous. The gap in many areas we can’t improve it in two months but the gap between the accountability, the energy, the commitment and the fight between the two teams is now equal. Before it wasn’t like this. I’m very proud of that. The rest will take some time but at least we’ve got that now and my message to the players is with that we can create something
2020 07 17 Retrieve
[Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta urges caution over fans return] Obviously things are evolving differently in different countries. I think we have to be patient. We are all desperate to have our people back in the stadiums and make football what it is again. But obviously we have to create a safe environment for people to join and my opinion is that it would be gradual. The sooner the better, but let’s be careful
2020 07 17b Retrieve
[Mikel Arteta insists he has full faith in Arsenal hierarchy] I have full faith. I have a really good relationship with Raul, with Edu, with Vinai [Venkatesham, managing director] and direct contact with the owners. We know what we want to do. That’s not the issue, for sure. There are many different aspects. Obviously the financial one, depending on where we finish, is one. Depending on the future of a few players and obviously depending on the transfer market. We don’t know the type of transfer market we are going to find. It is something unique, it never happened and there are a lot of question marks around that
[Arteta also revealed he is in regular contact with owner Stan Kroenke and that his questioning of financial options moving forward] That was misinterpreted. It wasn’t my intention. We work so closely with everyone at the club, with the owners to put the plan that we need to take the club forward. Everybody has the same ambition, we are in all of this together. But if you ask me if I know right now what do I have and how can I do it, I’m sorry but I don’t know because there are a lot of questions that we cannot resolve right now with the situation we have. One is financially and the other one is because we do not know if we are in Europe, and because we have players that we don’t know what’s going to happen [with]. That’s the reality
It’s not about sending a message, we all have the same objective which is to try to bring the club back as quickly as possible, fighting with the top teams in the country and in Europe and that’s it, and I want to do that as quickly as possible. I speak with them [Kroenke and the directors] and I have a really, really good and open relationship, that’s why when you mention that I am surprised because I don’t need to do that. I can make a phone call and speak to them and they have been very, very supportive from the first day that I joined the club and they were very much participating in the decision to bring me back here - and the same with Raul and Vinai and Edu. There are no gaps or friction or anything there