Monday, July 4, 2022

“We all have difficult matches” – Arteta expecting top four race to go to the wire

Mikel Arteta has played down suggestions that Arsenal and Sp*rs are in a straight shootout to finish fourth in the Premier League saying he continues to expect more “twists and turns.”

After consecutive wins over Manchester United and Chelsea, the Gunners head into the weekend with a two-point advantage on Antonio Conte’s side with both sides having five games remaining.

Despite a five-point gap on the Red Devils and an eight-point advantage over West Ham, the manager is reticent to write any side off.

“There will still be some twists and turns, we all have difficult matches to play,” he said on Friday.

“We all know how difficult it is to win games in the Premier League and now we had two really good results that put us in a really good position. But it is about doing it again at West Ham.”

A win against the Hammers would make it three in a row for the Gunners and the boss admits it’s given his players a real boost after a testing few weeks.

I think in the league when you are able to win consecutively away and at home, it gives you a huge platform and things quickly change,” he said.

“We have some momentum now and we want to make the most out of it.”

After an impressive campaign last time out, West Ham have continued to impress under David Moyes, not only challenging again for a place in Europe on the domestic front but also in the Europa League.

Even though the Hammers have had to contend with a busy schedule – they played against frankfurt on Thursday – Arteta isn’t expecting it to make the Gunners’ life any easier.

“They have been doing that all season and they have been really good in both competitions,” said the Spaniard.

“They have a big squad as well, they have many different options to change their players and still maintain their level. So I don’t see that. We have played games Wednesday night and Saturday at 12.30pm, we have managed to beat them, so I don’t think about that.”

He added: “It is very demanding but you watched yesterday’s game [against Frankfurt] nd the chances that they created and the chances that they missed it could have been very very different so I don’t think it’s a performance issue but of course, it is demanding when you play three times a week.”

Given West Ham are within touching distance of a first European final in nearly 50 years, there have been suggestions they could rest players on Sunday ahead of their semi-final second leg in Germany. The same is expected of Leicester, who play Sp*rs on Sunday, with the Foxes attempting to win the Europa Conference League.

“It’s a decision on how they manage their squad, how they get the best out of their squad and how close they think they are of reaching something that they have to prioritise,” noted Arteta. “You have to respect that decision.

“We don’t know what they think, what they think is better to prepare the match. All we are doing is preparing for the game in the normal way and knowing that it could vary and there could be some options.”

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Johnny 4 Hats

We have to forget this is a weakened West Ham side, we have to forget that this is a rotated West Ham side, we haver to forget that this is a fatigued West Ham side.

This is West Ham away. It’s a really, really tricky fixture and we need to bring our A game.

I think the narrative of this game could almost work against us. It doesn’t matter who they put out, they will be organised and efficient.

Professionalism is key.

COYG!

Up4GrabsNow!

Couldn’t agree more. Remember the game a few years back when they started a 16 yr old (Reece Oxford) in midfield and we allowed him to look like the next Yaya Toure? Can’t be complacent.

We have five cup finals coming up. Top 4 and CL would be huge. A great reward for Arteta and this young team and a means to attract top talent in the summer.

Johnny 4 Hats

I’ve also got a funny feeling about Leicester Sp*rs. I had the same feeling about Sp*rs Brentford. I can see more points dropped.

I feel like Sp*rs have been rumbled a bit. Rodgers will be watching the tape of how Frank set his side up and I think they could get a point out of Sp*rs.

Alex

Liverpool will sort spurs before we meet them. If we win at West Ham and Leeds, I’m expecting a 5 point gap before Spurs

Indiegooner

True. They played a weakened team against Chelsea the other week and almost got a point out of it. I expect them to very organized and difficult to break down with some counter attacking threat

Naked Cygan

If…if…we finish 4th, BIG if, do we have to play a qualifier round to make it to the group stages? Have they changed the format?

Dr Zebra

Haha not sure. But that’s how long we’ve been away from the competition that it seems so foreign!

Ringoxiii

No they changed it some years back, all 4 teams go directly into the group stage now. So no tricky trips to Udinese or anything that could trip us up at the last minute

Man Manny

The team should just go with the Stamford Bridge mindset, weakened West Ham or not. Go at them from the beginning.

Qwaliteee

Come on Arsenal.

We’ve worked so hard and come so far. Let’s not let these wankpots destroy everything now.

Fucking West Ham. Another set of trophy dodgers. Won fuck all since 1980, if you please. (When the ball hit Brooking on the head and went into the net past Pat Jennings).

ALBangbang

Every game is a cup final now lads, lets take this top 4 trophy home

Santori

Absolutely correct, we are lucky we have no mid week commitment and are out of all domestic cup or european competitions. If anything getting into top4 and Cl is a minor achievement if only by we SHOULD have reinforced last summer accordingly already if not in Jan. We are not able to compete on anything beyond domestic top 4 trophy once derided by Wenger Outs…schadenfreude. But we will have an interesting run in. West ham were a tricky banana peel negotiated if unconvincingly and we will need to be far better if we wish to close the deal. NLD looks… Read more »

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