Monday, September 26, 2022

Arteta proud of quartet’s England recognition, backs Ramsdale to bounce back

Mikel Arteta says Arsenal should be proud of having four players in the England squad after Ben White, Emile Smith Rowe, Bukayo Saka and Aaron Ramsdale were called up for upcoming friendlies with Switzerland and Ivory Coast.

The quartet – average age 22 – have been in stellar form for the Gunners this season and eight months out from the World Cup have a first chance of the year to stake their claim for a place on the plane to Qatar.

“I’m really happy,” said Arteta in his weekly press conference, “especially for the boys because they deserve to be there.

“They work so hard and I know how much it means for them to represent their country, and as a club I think we have to be very proud that our players are in the frontline and being noticed. It’s been a long time since that happened so I think it’s a good sign.”

Asked what he puts their call-ups down to, the boss added: “Their efforts, how much they want it, obviously their quality, their ability, and then obviously what they’re doing performance-wise to get the attention of the England manager.”

While Arsenal had six players selected by Roy Hodgson for Euro 2016 qualifiers (Calum Chambers, Kieran Gibbs, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Theo Walcott, Danny Welbeck and Jack Wilshere), it’s been eight years since four Gunners were on the pitch at the same time for England. It feels like there’s a real possibility of that happening at Wembley in the coming weeks.

Before they turn their attention to international duty, the players first have to get themselves back on track domestically as Arsenal take on Aston Villa.

Wednesday’s defeat to Liverpool was frustrating and particularly for Ramsdale who came in for criticism for failing to keep out Diego Jota’s opener which was rifled in at the keeper’s near post. Arteta admits his summer signing was disappointed.

“Oddly he was gutted after the match,” revealed the boss. “It’s normal because he’s such a competitive boy, but he needs to realise that this is going to happen in your career.

“At this stage, and if you play for the national team, probably you are going to have a moment when you do something, and then instead of some part of the country, it will be the whole country (on your back).

“If you want to be at the top for 10, 15 or 20 years you have to be prepared for that. It’s about how you react in those moments.”

He noted the player’s reaction has been “top” before adding: “He’s very critical of himself so sometimes he needs to have some help to put things into perspective, and for him to realise as well how much he has contributed to the team.”

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C.B.

4 top players (all of them better than the ones chosen by Hodgson imo).

Looking good for Arsenal and England, given how young they are and the chances of them improving further!

Steve Vallins

@ C.B
Really , Wilshere !!!

C.B.

I love him but he scored 7 goals in 125 Arsenal appearances.

ESR is beating that *this season* at the age of 21. As is Saka at 20, who has been in the final of the Euros.

Who would you rather have in your team, objectively?

Ellis McPickle

I think the tendency is to remember Wilshere on the basis of the player we thought he’d be. Still hard to think up a better individual performance from a youngster than THAT game against Barcelona…

C.B.

And his ‘What do you think of T*ttenham’ chant. Legend.

So much potential but never truly made it, admittedly down to injuries. Or we would have taken him back recently at the age of 30, he’s not that old.

Ellis McPickle

Could be a sign of progess too! Wasn’t that long ago (or was it? The years are starting to add up) resigning Flamini on a free was “smart business”.

A Different George

It did look smart when he scored two against Spurs.

A Different George

The old line about a keeper should never concede at his near post is silly because sometimes the only way to protect the near post is to make it easy to score at the far post. But, in this case, it is true because Ben White’s slide made it impossible for the shot to go anywhere except near post (Lee Dixon pointed this out immediately on the United States commentary). So, the sort of event that a more experienced top-level keeper will read and interpret in a split second (along with the identity of the shooter and his tendencies) to… Read more »

Forget about it

Shame that the shit show that is Qatar should be a goal for anyone. I am sorry but I will never be behind it.

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