Arteta on Man City, transfers and more | Press conference | News

Mikel Arteta faced the media via Zoom on Friday to get a preview of our next game against Manchester City.

The boss was asked about who will take charge in his absence, versus Pep Guardiola, January transfers and more.

Read on for a full transcript:

how he is feeling and if there are any new cases in the team …

First of all, I feel much, much better today, I had a few rough days, but obviously I have been through this before, so not bad at all. The rest of the workforce is well placed, we have tested the players, we have no other new (cases) than those before. We try to communicate with them as much as possible, and obviously leaning on the rest of the team and the coaches that we have, I believe in them 100%.

if Manchester City are a better team than when they left …

Well, they’re different teams. The fact that they’ve been together for six years, obviously they get perfection in every phase of the game, and every aspect of the game, and much better, the team cohesion and synergy between due to the amount of time they spent together. They are getting better and better and the numbers speak for themselves, what they have done in the last calendar year is remarkable.

on what the team learned after the Etihad loss in August …

Well, I hope to find a very different game. We are starting this game very positively, but in the first action we conceded a goal and went for 10 men. Obviously it’s hard enough to play 11 against 11, so when it goes to 10 against 11 for so long in the game, it becomes a real, real challenge and we suffered. But some of those defeats help you get better and stick together and understand what the level is and what mistakes you can’t make against that kind of opposition.

if our form means that we are entering the game of equals …

We prepare for the game like any other game and we know the opposition we are going to face. There’s no need to talk about it because it’s so obvious and focus on what we have to do to try to win the match, compete every moment of the match and have the conviction that is the most thing. important early on that we can go on to win the game.

on who will be in charge of the team …

Well Albert will be in charge of the rest of the squad and depending on the coaches we have because we’ve had so many problems in this department recently, but everyone will be there to try to help us as much as possible.

whether he knows exactly who will be on the bench …

No.

on how he will communicate during the match …

We will be in contact, but also, I want to give them the possibility, the opportunity and the freedom to make decisions on the pitch and to express themselves because it is completely different to be on this touchline near the players. and action than being at home. I’m going to be there to support and help at times, but they have to give the game momentum and communicate with the players themselves.

on whether he is happy to pass the check …

Well, I’ve never experienced what I’m going to experience tomorrow, but it is. It’s not going to be easy to feel frustrated and with a lack of options because obviously not being in training sessions and not being able to prepare things as you want and with the messages you want and do in so that the players feel like you’re right next to them. It’s a different experience, but we have to adapt to it and we have tried to do it in the best possible way to prepare for tomorrow.

on our recent approach to big games and if we played their game …

We have played in different ways against the two teams you just mentioned (Liverpool and Manchester City). We played with different formations and we played with full-backs three, full-backs four and full-backs with two forwards in different ways, and we found results against them. Recently, especially against Manchester City with the two games at the Etihad, we played 10 which makes the game very, very difficult, but all we are going to prepare is to try to win and give the the better the team possible chance of participating in the game because the closer you are to winning it.

on whether Ainsley Maitland-Niles could move to Rome on loan …

Any news with a player or whatever is going on, you know we always keep it private and that he is our player at the moment.

if he will be pacing in his room tomorrow …

It’s going to be very strange and I’ll need a big room to be able to walk and move around a bit because I won’t be able to sit on my couch. It’s a big, big game for us and it’s really frustrating not being able to be there to help the team, but I’ll do my best from here with whatever I can do and we’ve got each other. prepared for all possible scenarios. We know what we need to do and it will be up to the players to execute it as much as possible tomorrow.

if the club has prepared for it to work remotely …

It’s a possibility, because of the amount of positives we have in the coaching staff, we’ve talked about it a lot, but it’s the same with the players, we don’t know who will be available tomorrow. because things change very quickly and then you don’t want to be reactive which is why you have to be prepared for different options.

if this is our biggest test …

Well that’s the biggest test in terms of the level of opposition, at 100% they’ve shown that really consistently throughout the year, not just this year but over the last three years , so this is the level, they have raised a different level bar in this league that has been known before and that is where we have to get to and that is the goal that we have as a team and as a that club.

on if this month could define our season …

Well we’re going to play in three different competitions and these are knockout competitions so you’re in or out and obviously winning or losing makes all the difference for the team and the success of the season so we know and we are ready for that.

on whether the recent results justify its decision on Aubameyang …

For me it’s not about being right or wrong, it’s about making the decision that you believe in and dealing with the consequences of what you ask to do and I made that decision and as I I said, it will be game by game.

to let Auba go to CAN early …

We got a letter from the national team asking for permission to have the player and the player was not going to get involved today so for his fitness and to keep competing it was the right thing to do. To do.

on the qualities of Albert Stuivenberg…

I met him a few years ago through another trainer, obviously he’s a trainer that I knew before because of his reputation and who he worked with before and we have a really good connection, we have the same convictions, we see the game in the same way, we share all the values ​​that we think should be installed at the club and he is someone who is very close to me, he is more than capable, he l ‘has already done so in this direction, I am very relaxed this.

on how he will communicate with Albert during the game …

Hopefully things are going well and I don’t have to overdo it and they can! The situation has been discussed and obviously we will have some communication.

out of the impressive total of points this calendar year …

Well I think that’s a really important thing, because it shows the consistency we’ve had in terms of results which obviously (was driven) by performance. But, unfortunately, that doesn’t give us anything. We have to do it not in the calendar year, but in the Premier League year. This is the challenge we have before us, and we have shown that we are capable of doing it. So that’s where we’re headed.

on Guardiola’s comments that Mikel is Arsenal’s most important player, and if these are Pep’s mind games…

No, I think he’s just nice! We spoke yesterday because of COVID, he asked me how I was, because we have this relationship. Tomorrow, he will defend his club and I will defend – from home – my club. You hear him, he always says that the players are the protagonists, and the most important, and I agree with that.

on Pep’s comments that they are Arsenal’s best team since working in the league …

It’s always good to hear that other coaches think that way about the work we do. My feeling is that they are the best team that has existed in Premier League history, and they have proven that consistently over the years. This is the level we need to reach, and as this table shows, we are still very far from it. So that’s the margin and the target that we should all have.

on Aubameyang’s situation upon his return from CAN …

For the moment, he’s gone (at CAN). He needs to focus on the national team, and we had the conversation which was the best way to do it. As I said before, we will tackle (his situation) game by game.

if he anticipates a busy transfer window in January …

We are expecting some activity because of a few players, and we have a few loans that we will hopefully have to complete. But it depends, as we all know, it’s a very complicated market, and it’s a short window, so we’ll see what happens.

on if he has any New Years resolutions…

No, I just want to start the year the way we ended it. May everyone be healthy tomorrow, perform well and get the points we want. For the rest of our people, I think what we are aiming for is health and somehow get rid of this virus for the rest of our lives.

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