Arteta: We’re not good enough to relax

21

Mikel Arteta says his players are not good enough to relax and thinks they will have learned a lesson from the first half schooling dished out to them by Leeds United. 

A much-improved showing in the second half saw the Gunners claim a gritty 1-0 win but Arteta admitted afterwards that he had to get angry in the dressing room to provoke a reaction. 

It sounds as though the Spaniard threw the gauntlet down to his underperforming side, despite knowing that many are fatigued after an intense few weeks of festive football and new ideas to take onboard. 

Asked if he was surprised by his side’s poor first half, Arteta told his post-game press conference: “To be fair, it didn’t. I think it was a big release for them when they won against Manchester United and they took a little bit of that pressure off. And then your body and your mind tries to relax a little bit for one or two days. 

“Now, we are not in a position to relax because we are not good enough to relax. If we don’t play at that level, we are not good enough.

He added: “That’s why we had to react. We changed some things. The biggest change was how we approached the second half, the mentality, how aggressive we are, how intense we are. 

“We started to win every duel, every 50:50, we were playing in the opponent’s half and making passes forward and runs forward and being positive on the ball. It was different.” 

Arteta went on to admit that it’s his responsibility to get his side playing high-intensity football every time they take to the pitch, not just for short spells in games.

“That’s the job, that’s what I have to find out with these players. But I have to recognise, I played those type of games and in recent months we played against teams that go man-to-man and it’s very uncomfortable.

“For the players, they’re not used to it and it becomes a battle, it becomes a transition game. When you win the ball, you attack. When you lose the ball, it’s a counter-attack. I think they had to experience that as well.”

Consistency is also something he’s looking for. “Absolutely, because they haven’t done it for many, many months,” he said.

“So it has to be a process, but that’s why I think tonight is a really good lesson for them. So they can live their profession and suffer on the pitch like they did for 30 or 35 minutes, or they can enjoy and feel proud of what they do if they play like they did in the second half. It’s their choice.”

guest
21 Comments
oldest
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Chidi

Increase the volume!

Nana Antwi

An obviously intelligent man at the helm. Good luck to us and him.

gunner17

man just keeps saying the exact right things xx

Oregoon

When we say the Arsenal isn’t good enough just to walk on the field and win, that is one thing, but when your manager says it, it’s a rocket up the bum!

Reality check

“XX”
Loll Someone’s falling in love.. never seen that at Arseblog, defo not for Unai

Ourchildrensworld

I’m not sure if it’s because he replaced Emery (and not Wenger!) but it’s so nice to have an articulate, opinionated Manager.

Emery might have been a strong communicator. But not in English.

It makes such a difference to the confidence of fans so it must make a huge difference to players trying to buy in to new systems.

TheLimpBar

There’s no time a to relax

Steve

Just love everything he says

Naked Cygan

We are not good enough to relax? Yes

We are not good enough to be a top 6 side? Yes

Why? Today was a perfect example that these guys are not playing 100% for the shirt. They show up for 45 minutes at best and that is not good enough, and I hope Arteta tells them to get their act together and perform for 90 minutes.

imagine we start paying them 50% of their salaries??

Looney

Be off with your negativity. This is not the time nor place to start calling those boys names. They are human beings too.

Naked Cygan

I am just stating facts, and the truth hurts. In any other profession, these guys would be fired within 1 month. what is wrong with demanding our players give everything for 90 minutes? How is that negative?

David Count

I think the issue is that a little understanding and compassion is necessary here. They gave everything against United and Chelsea and that took its toll on their bodies. It’s not saying that they should slack off, neither is it an excuse for the first half performance, but it is something we can understand as humans. I hope Arteta is able to whip them into shape so they can hold up for 90 minutes in every game

Ozenal

He’s absolutely right. Focus on the process

It’s good to get a spanking and get out manouvred but change it all with your attitude.

It’s also what we need to see as fans.

Good work Arteta and team.

Plenty of youngsters in there to learn that lesson too.

Ozenal

Really impressed how Arteta is getting the most out of his leaders. They really are responding to him. Xhaka and Ozil are really dying for the cause.

Ozil is taken off every 75th min of each game but if he continues putting in a shift he will continue to receive the applause he deserves.

Koz

Papa, Kola and Luiz too. Torreira as well in the last game. They look like they are ready to run through walls for Arteta and that’s what I like the most about the new era

Nairo254gunna

I really struggled to get a working stream to watch the game and after trying all of 1st half and failing and reading how much were struggling on BBC live updates, I decided to go to bed (it was close to midnight in Nairobi). This is not the 1st time I have done that after failing to find a stream, only difference was this time I slept with the feeling that we will be alright and figure out how to win the match. Woke up to a good ol’ fashioned 1 nil to the Arsenal. I really, really, really like… Read more »

Yando

Been watching all streams on VIPROW or Hesgoal in Nairobi too

Nairo254gunna

Asante. ??

Pradeep Kachhala

Mikel says : Don’t Relax

Ben Eagerbeaver

A bit off-topic I know, but anyone noticed Arteta seems to have made black his colour, like Simeone. I like it though!

Teryima Adi

I just love the way our coach talks. Awesome guy♥️