Arteta: Chelsea win proves how much players care

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Mikel Arteta was quick to praise the attitude of his players after Arsenal secured a creditable 1-0 victory against Chelsea.

Without a win at the Stamford Bridge since 2011, the Gunners benefited from terrible defending by the home side to wriggle into an early lead via Emile Smith Rowe’s scuffed effort.

After that, it was the definition of a backs-to-the-wall performance with the Blues penning us in and mounting wave after wave of attack. Somehow, despite the ball rattling the bar a couple of times, we held on for an 11th clean sheet of the season.

“It’s been ten years I think since we won here so I think it’s a really important result for the club, for our fans and also for our players because I think they showed how much they mean it,” said Arteta.

“(The players showed) the spirit and the attitude that they have among the group and how much they care about it.”

In his post-game interview with Sky Sports, Arteta took the media to task for their interpretation of some of his pre-game comments. The Spaniard seemed to suggest that some players hadn’t given their maximum this season when he was actually trying to say he had failed to get the best from them.

His frustration shone through in the press conference when he was asked if last night’s win was a reaction to outside pressure.

“Probably for the outside world it was,” he said, “but they don’t have to show anything to me because I see them every day, how they prepare, how professional they are, and how much they try. But probably from the outside, yes, it was a big message.”

It seems Arteta was quick to clarify what he was trying to say in a meeting with his players.

Rob Holding revealed to BBC 5 Live: “The stuff came out in the media yesterday which he [Arteta] said isn’t true. It’s out of context. He explained that to us. We knew it wasn’t his opinion. We showed that tonight and we backed him and we did what he asked.”

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Jack

Can I just check, if by some miracle we win our last games and others in front drop points and we end up finishing 7th, can we still get into Europa League via a qualifier? I read the rules but I still don’t understand how it works with teams winning the domestic cups etc.

A Gorilla

For me, it’s CL or nothing. Not being in europa worked very well for Chelsea and Liverpool in their road back to the top. It can work for us too.

SB Still

I used to have the same opinion till two weeks ago when there was possibility to get into CL by winning EL.

However, considering this season’s performance and outcome, I’m settled for EL, atleast some outside chance of winning something. Arteta has shown he can win one-off big games. Ofcourse we become nervous playing Villarreal as well!

A Gorilla

The team were really nervous and the manager is to blame for that. I don’t think it’s a sackable offence though. The league position is a different story

CoNr

It is a bit confusing, but from what I gather, 7th place will go into the Europa Conference league, with English clubs going straight into the playoff round..

What this means I have no idea, do the winners of that go into the Europa League?? is this a separate competition? it was not very well explained when I looked into it

A Gorilla

“ The winners of the competition are awarded a position in the Europa League the following season, unless they qualify for the Champions League”

Magneto

The Europa Conference League is apparently a new competition, set to be tried out over a 3 year period from next season onwards.

I started reading more about it but my eyes glazed over…

Graeb

The Conference is to Europa League what Europa League was to Champions League – another way to get more teams from more countries playing more games for more TV money for UEFA funds.

A team winning the Conference will have played another 15 games through a league and knockout system on Thursdays.

I hate the idea of qualifying for it unless it means that we’d also have St Totteringham’s Day to enjoy.

Jack

If that’s right and we CAN get into that Europa Conference League, would be an amazing opportunity for the U23s to get some first team minutes

Qwaliteee

And Willian.

Jarghs

I only heard about the European Conference for the first time in the last week or so, so I’m none the wiser what qualifying for it actually means. I’m just going to tell myself it’s better than the Champions League, probably.

Ps. Bit rough that someone thumbed this down. Nothing wrong with asking questions about things we don’t understand.

Mpls

5th directly qualifies for the Europa League group stages. If one of the league top 5 also wins the FA cup, the 6th place club gets into EL. If the winner of the Carabao Cup is already qualified for Europe (City did), 7th place gets Europa Conference League. As far as I can tell, it works the opposite way. Europa Conference League catches the chaff knocked out during the Champions League and Europa League early rounds. Nobody qualifies forward the same year. The winner of the Conference League qualifies for Europa League the next year. Pool have 2 matches in… Read more »

IamaGoober

Am I correct in thinking that if Chelsea win the Champions League final and also finish 4th, doesn’t that then drop the respective Champions League and Europa League places down one?

So the UCL spot would move down from 4th to 5th, and the Europa League places move down from 5th and 6th, to 6th & 7th? Which would also push the awful Europa Conference spot down to 8th?

allezkev

Encouraging comments from Rob as once again the media, and that’s print, TV and especially online have again proved what a pernicious mob they are.

Heavenly Chapecoense

Arteta is the one not telling the truth in this case. Did Auba, Bellerin, Laca, Ceballos, Holding, even Pépé before the last two months or so, give their best this season?
These players need to be told this, not publicly perhaps. If their best is what we’ve seen then they should be playing for Norwich instead.

Matthinc

Norwich are alright man.

Qwaliteee

My second favourite Subbuteo team back in the early 70’s ….!! 😊

Biggles

It doesn’t make up for a very disappointing season but if we can win our remaining games, on top of the last two, then what’s not to like? It doesn’t mean we’ve “turned a corner” or “everything in the Arsenal garden is rosy” but I’d still have a possible four wins from the last four, if that’s the case, than not. I tend to agree with the comments from Holding. A lot of Gooners who want Arteta out, for perfectly understandable reasons, are looking for anything that reinforces that view. So regardless of whether he said it, he didn’t say… Read more »

A Gorilla

It’s easy to be balanced when you’re sitting on a fence

Biggles

I’m not sitting on a fence. I think Arteta should be given another year – which I think he will be. I’m also happier when Arsenal win so have no problems hoping that they win their two remaining games – unlike some on this site, it would appear.

If we win our final two games. It will be the first time that Arteta has managed four league wins in a row since he joined.

I think our squad is more than capable of having at least one round of WWWWW form in 17 months. That’s all some of us are asking for but Mikel seems to strategize himself out of it.

Whether it’s squad selection, match tactics or man-management, he’s yet to show where his strengths are. Personally I’d like a coach with at least strong at something.

Atom

It’s almost funny that the worst Arsenal team in over 30 years just did the double on the potential European champions.

Graeb

Would you swap that double for either of their Final places? I reckon so but enjoy anyway.

Atom

For sure. This season has been a trainwreck. Even yesterday (similar to our FA cup run) was unbelievably lucky. But have to enjoy the small things!

goonshow

Take the luck mate! We’ve had more than our share of it going the other way this season…

Qwaliteee

Bad luck? Face facts, we’ve been shit. You make your own luck in this world.

Qwaliteee

My great uncle, who is now 95 and served with the Paras in Italy and North Africa during WWII, has been an Arsenal fan since he started going to Highbury as a young lad in the 1930’s. After the war, my uncle also played for Leytonstone, alongside Perry Groves’ Great Uncle, ‘Bunny’ Groves (NOT to be confused with Perry’s uncle Vic, who also played for Leytonstone before his Arsenal days) in the 1947 Amateur Cup Final against Wimbledon at Highbury. I spoke to my great uncle on the phone the other day and he reckons this is the worst managed… Read more »

Heavenly Chapecoense

Do you remember when we missed the CL through the league with Emery and things improved in the last 3 games and Auba scored a couple to be joint golden boot winner? Don’t you have enough being fooled this way?
Also, do you really think Arteta believes a guy like Auba gave his best this season?

Snc

What’s the point really? When it matter most, you guys hide.

Qwaliteee

This.

loose_cannon

I think Arteta did make a mistake with what he said a couple days ago, but that’s been rectified now and we can move on from it.

A Gorilla

Yep. People make mistakes and that press conference was a minor one. His biggest one, for me, is the formation in the first semi-final. Team selection is one thing, but dicking around with our formation in such a big game is almost unforgiveable..

loose_cannon

Yeah he’s tactics, including selections and substitutions, are all still up for debate.

Santi's Little Helper

The team selection didn’t work, but what was the alternative? Nketiah up front? I know people are clamoring for Balogun (who looks a very interesting prospect) but realistically it was either Eddie, who has really flattered to deceive in the 2nd half of the season, or do something different. People were pretty excited about the line-up before the game. Had either Laca or Auba been fit he would have played them, it wasn’t like he tinkered unnecessarily (which he is very prone to doing). Eddie in retrospect probably would have been a better choice but just as likely that we… Read more »

SarcasmB0t

Except it hasn’t been rectified.

He hasn’t come out and admitted he’s made a mistake – he’s criticized the media for misrepresenting what he’s said.

That’s not rectifying a mistake, that’s denying it.

Philly Gooner

What’s more important though is that evidently it was rectified in the eyes of the dressing room (as Rob Holding has told us), who then went out and worked hard and executed a hard fought win against a very good team. Who knows about the future, but I’d say that probably draws a line under this particular incident.

loose_cannon

Exactly this.

Biggles

Absolutely right. When players come out to support the manager I think that carries a tad more weight than “the usual suspects” take on this story.

Hank Scorpio

The players came out in support of Emery until he was gone. I take the public backing with a pinch of salt.

Qwaliteee

Every player these days is out for himself.

If you don’t believe that Biggs, you’re even more naive and gullible than I thought.

Qwaliteee

One player’s view might not represent that of the entire squad.

I’ve seen enough this season to suggest that Arteta has lost the dressing room – particularly with the senior experienced players. Even Partey is a shadow of the player he was before we signed him.

Qwaliteee

Well said.

The guy is now trying to wriggle out of the fact that he publicly blamed the players.

Whilst it’s not the worst crime in the world, it’s foolish and counter productive for team morale. And to then try and twist it around smacks of desperation.

The man is out of his depth and needs to go.

Qwaliteee

Blogs mate, you are normally bang on the money.

But not this time. Or at least we can agree to disagree In my opinion, there were no crossed wires here. He knew what he was saying.

arseblog

Have to disagree then. I think this was a misunderstanding on both sides.

goonshow

And that opinion of course has nothing to do with your fervent loathing of Arteta and the fact that you take every single opportunity to leap into any random thread on here to criticise him? You’ve long since lost any claim to rationality where he’s concerned mate. LISTEN to the interview a couple times – as Blogs did, and as I now have. He is clearly answering the first question addressed to him, not the 2nd that’s fired in just as he’s about to speak… He begins his answer using ‘With’ – that logically relates to the question: ‘Do you… Read more »

PB70

As an AFC fan…the only one who is foolish and related to the club in ANY way – is you (yes, fans have an impact). Your constant BS is counter-productive to any reasonable discussion. Having said that, I’ve had my insane drunk rants here – hence, moderated. Hopefully, they let this comment get through. So, I get the irony of me calling you out. I am no better. This site used to be filled with people who might not agree, but were constructive and not total meanies (I was gonna say ‘pricks’ but that might get mod-ed). It was about… Read more »

Futsboller

Thanks for taking time to say that, as I’ve felt the same culture change on Arseblog News as well. I keep coming back, because I can’t live without Arseblog (you had me at hello, Blogs …) and being a part of Arsenal in this way, but the instant negativity, the enduring pessimism, the uncritical rants, the simmering hatred … it’s always so loud, so relentless, and it forecloses on the possibility of having reasonable discussion. But this is the internet. The only thing we can do is call it out when it is abusive or crosses a line, and otherwise… Read more »

goonshow

Hear hear.

goonshow

Well said mate. I posted something similar a few days back: most of us have had a rant on here. And I’ve actually up-voted some of Q’s more reasoned comments – he is clearly passionate about The Arsenal, which counts for something. But for Pete’s sakes – make your case, try to base it in something resembling logic/rationality/reasonably critical thinking – and then MOVE ON!!! In any forum, and particularly one such as this, where we are all in theory, supporting the same ultimate mission – the constant personal sniping at anyone who disagrees with your very rigid views does… Read more »

karl

I always want Arsenal to win whatever the circumstances, so tonight was very welcome and I’m sure some players do care. There is deftly something wrong with the setup if you spend heavily and go backwards though.

It doesn’t look that healthy with Auba this season and especially when he came off last night.

Good luck to Mikel, but please forget about signing any over 30s this summer!

Graeb

Agreed but there are some who post on this site who have said they won’t watch Arsenal again until they improve!

I’m an Arsenal fan of >60 years standing and that means I support the club and every team that goes out wearing the badge (nice that u-18s also beat Chelski yesterday) even it becomes painful at times.

Arsepedant

100% this! You never give up on your club, never!

PB70

I wrote a massive post to agree with what you and Graeb said But it seems pointless to explain myself to those fans who need to fucking beat our club down on every level because they are entitled a win! A win I tell you….glory, now!! So, this is shorter 🙂 Totally agree with you and Graeb – hopefully, it’s fans like you who win out on the internet. It matters, the fans are definitely part of the reason why we are where we are – but they won’t see it. Just fly fucking planes over the Emirates, abuse our… Read more »

Qwaliteee

“Fans who support the badge.”

So, let me get this straight. Those of us who want better than mid table for this club and a different manager and owner, don’t support the badge…?

To want Arteta out and Kroenke out is to not support Arsenal?

Crap. Utter crap.

Futsboller

We all want better than mid-table, Q; to think otherwise is missing something fundamental about why we are so involved in this in the first place.

goonshow

Once again, you willfully misinterpret someone else’s comment to fit your own anger-filled narrative:
it is not the ‘wanting better for this great club’… it is HOW you seek to go about achieving that.
Abusing your fellow supporters, personal attacks on them, players and – most especially – our manager, serves nobody well.

karl

Well said. Most fans I know say a thing like that after a match, but they are there to suffer again for the next match. It is the life of the true supporter. If it doesn’t hurt a lot when we lose, something is wrong.

SB Still

I’m in the camp who are not sure if Arteta is the right manager to take us in the right direction.

However, I’m happy that he doesn’t want to throw his players under the bus like a certain self-proclaimed special twat.

Heavenly Chapecoense

The way you do it is to impose additional training sessions. A short one, right after the game against Villareal for example. Everybody knows what you mean.

Qwaliteee

Really? Tell that to Pepe.

PB70

You now know Pepe? He has improved this season. So, whatever your whine about MA is, Pepe has played better footie these last 4 months, regardless of you trying to make it an issue. Your spin is weak.

By the way, shouldn’t you have said “Really? Tell that to Ozil.”

Qwaliteee

Pepe has played better because Arteta has actually picked him.

And bringing up Ozil for the billionth time is beyond childish.

It’s your trolling that is weak, pal.

SarcasmB0t

Arteta and the players being satisfied with a win when we didn’t create a chance all game proves how much standards have fallen and how negotiable the non-negotiables are.

A decent manager could not be happy with a performance like this, especially given our league position.

Clearly not the right man to turn things around.

Futsboller

Try to enjoy life a little bit. It really isn’t all that bad you know.

Qwaliteee

FFS. Why is it that people who are opposed to Arteta remaining in his job are being painted on this site as manic depressives in need of a country retreat..? Am I missing something here? Is there some sort of law prohibiting a perfectly normal fan response at how this club’s season has panned out? What is this? Denial Central? This ridiculous forced jollity and indifference to the current state of the club is just what our owner (and his manager) wants, by the way. By being ambivalent, you’re giving the people that are gradually destroying the very fabric of… Read more »

Futsboller

You are missing something, Q. You are missing the joy of when we win a match, against a rival club, in which everyone put in a serious shift of work and fought hard to get a clean sheet away from home at a ground we haven’t had much success at in a decade. I really enjoyed those three points, and was really pleased to see more than a few people enjoying them too. I wish you guys could enjoy it as well. There is nothing wrong with having doubts about the manager, of disagreeing with his choices and methods, of… Read more »

goonshow

Such bitterness… wow.

PB70

That’s the point though. Because of the league position we’re in we played the way we did – and won!!!

Clearly we might not agree on whether MA should be given another year, but a win matters, no? How is not being happy at a win, negotiable unless you have a MA shaped stick up your bottom?

Teryima Adi

Dressing room politics. As a coach you must master the art of Doublespeak because Big Brother is watching you.

PB70

If you mean the asshole fans we have, totally agree. Dissect everything about our club because we are not where we all want to be. Podcasts, video guys, commenters – pile on and make the same pointless point.

Thank God for James 🙂 AFC need to poach him from The Atlantic and give him a job -that guy has an amazing footie mind. He can be constructive and brings up amazing points, even very critical of players and the manager – all the while not being ‘oh no…we’re all fucked and …oh, the humanity!’.