Arteta: I demand that they never give up

17

Mikel Arteta was rightly pleased with the grit and determination of his Arsenal players after they battled their way to a point at Stamford Bridge.

Hector Bellerin’s 88th-minute strike snatched a 2-2 draw against Chelsea who failed to make the most of their man advantage after David Luiz was sent off in the first half for conceding a penalty that was converted by Jorginho.

Gabriel Martinelli’s wonderful solo effort restored parity before Cesar Azpilicueta thought he’d stolen the points for the home side. Thankfully, it was our Spanish full-back who had the last laugh.

Here’s what Arteta made of it all when he faced the BT Sport cameras…

On the result being a turning point…

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 team-mate makes a mistake they have to have their back.

On whether he was going to substitute Martinelli in the first half…

We thought about taking everybody off because obviously the energy went down and every five minutes somebody was cramping. We changed our mind a few times. It’s a good point given the circumstances of the game.

On coming back from a disastrous start…

Yeah, in this place as well. I said to the team, I want to see how you behave in this stadium, coming here against a big team in this stadium. We are hoping to fight to stay in the race for the Champions League until the end. If you’re going to do that, you have to come here and perform. The way they did it, was brilliant.

On Bellerin’s return and Xhaka’s performance…

When you are willing, when you have the spirit and the attitude to do it, you can play anywhere on the pitch. Instead of complaining, they stepped up and they tried to help the team as much as possible. I asked Hector if he was going to be ready for today and his first answer was, ‘boss, I’m ready, so let’s go.’ These things happen in football. When you want to play, you enjoy your profession and good moments come.

On building on this result…

Absolutely, and not just next week but every three days. That’s the demands of this football club.

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La Défense
La Défense
1 month ago

What a mass man! What a manager. Feels like we’ve struck gold.

Fireman Sam
Fireman Sam
30 days ago
Reply to  La Défense

We’ve struck Lego!

COYG 1001
COYG 1001
1 month ago

”Absolutely, and not just next week but every three days. That’s the demands of this football club.“

He never missed a chance to communicate his expectations. Realistic, demanding, and positive.

Love it!

Magic City Gooner
Magic City Gooner
1 month ago

Our Skipper!

ArsenAlan
ArsenAlan
1 month ago

That has to boost the confidence anyway. Going down twice and coming back with only 10 men? It’s certainly boosted my confidence!

And to think we did it missing Auba, an actual LB and with a pairing of Mustafi and Luiz.

“I would say, be excited”, excited indeed

locksley444
locksley444
1 month ago
Reply to  ArsenAlan

After 26 minutes, it was a CB pairing of Mustafi and Xhaka! I don’t know if that will ever sink in.. Mikel has worked miracles in terms of resetting the players’ mentality!

para
para
1 month ago
Reply to  ArsenAlan

The FIGHT is what fans want to see from the players.

Canuck Gunner
Canuck Gunner
1 month ago

I was soooo close to turning off the tv when we went down 2-1 – felt certain that was it – another disappointing finish to a game. Thankfully I didn’t. What a fantastic response and effort right to the end! Top 4 is out for sure, but the results will come soon and I’m reallty excited about the future.

Cliff Bastin
Cliff Bastin
1 month ago
Reply to  Canuck Gunner

Azpuelicueta thought that was it as well. 😀

OdalGooner
OdalGooner
1 month ago
Reply to  Canuck Gunner

I nearly broke something. Either my foot, or the coffee table. It’s been a long time since i’ve jumped up and roared with joy in the dying moments of one of our games. Table seems to have recovered, and so have I.
Mikel, you not only heal our team, but feet, furniture and hopes!

ArsenesLongSufferingZipper
ArsenesLongSufferingZipper
1 month ago

“We thought about taking everybody off…..” Well, from the fighting spirit the lads showed with 10 men, I also believe we could have matched Chelsea, even with everyone sitting on the bench! COYG!!!

Santori
Santori
1 month ago

Bottom line is :

1) DO NOT MAKE EXCUSES FOR YOURSELF OR FEEL SORRY FOR YOURSELF

2) DO NOT SET LIMITS ON YOURSELF.

the?2n
the?2n
30 days ago
Reply to  Santori

Where’s the BUT, Santori? Are you running a fever mate? That’s the shortest post I ever seen you make on here…

Marco
30 days ago
Reply to  the?2n

HAHA.No mention of Emre Can either.

Prajwal M Pai
Prajwal M Pai
1 month ago

Club needs to give Arteta money to buy Cb/Fb and a playmaker of his type in summer irrespective of our
final position in the league. The more games I watch,the more I feel he is going to bring us back to our glory days.

Ray Parlour's ice cream van
Ray Parlour's ice cream van
1 month ago

“£80m Almunia” – Blogs, I love your humour. Made me chuckle a bit this morning.

Anthony
Anthony
30 days ago

Can’t remember a night we fought so hard in years