Monday, July 22, 2024

Arteta eyes Arsenal improvement but pleased with growing confidence

Mikel Arteta says Arsenal still have room for improvement despite a 2-1 victory over Aston Villa maintaining their winning start to the new campaign.

Goals in each half from Gabriel Jesus and Gabriel Martinelli sealed the points but, for a brief moment after compatriot Douglas Luiz equalised for the visitors straight from a corner, it looked like the Gunners might pay for their profligacy in front of goal.

The home side were particularly dominant in the first half but despite attempting 15 shots on goal went into the break with only a goal to their name.

After the match, Arteta said: “We are really happy because we are winning football matches that we deserve to win because of the way we are performing and playing.

“We need to continue, as I always say, there are a lot of things we have to improve and you see that in the second half.

“Obviously, the way we play in the first half, the amount of chances, how much we generated, how dominant we were, the energy played with is really pleasing as a coach. We go to the next one.”

He added: “It’s the most difficult thing in football to score goals, but today we had some big, big, big chances and we didn’t put them away, but obviously, the intention of the players is to score.

“The goal of Gabi Martinelli I think is a really difficult technique, the height of the ball, the angle he is getting, the way he is approaching the ball and he still managed to hit the target and that always gives you a chance. We are working on it all the time and I think we are getting much better and as always, there is room for improvement.”

It wasn’t the first time this season that Arsenal reacted to the blow of conceding by quickly scoring a goal of their own. After doing it twice against Leicester and on Saturday versus Fulham, Arteta’s players repeated the trick for a third successive game at the Emirates.

“That’s the mentality we want to show as a team and the character we want to show, to react immediately. Disappointment and conceding goals is part of the game, like is giving the ball away or having a bad action, it’s about the next action, the next phase and again, when you play in front of this crowd, that helps because the energy they create is just amazing.

He added: “Going through positive experiences and overcoming difficulties gives you the confidence that you can do it. That could be individually or as a team. When you start to get that belief and create those moments, it’s not just us that believes but the crowd that believes. When that connection happens anything is possible.”

Whether fair or not, Arsenal have developed a bit of a reputation for melting in the heat of battle and have often struggled in recent years to wrestle back momentum of matches.

Asked if he’s been working on that, Arteta replied: “Obviously we try to improve our players, we to try to improve the team, there are many things that aren’t just technical or tactical aspects that play a big part in football matches.

“That’s another tool that we are developing, we need to keep developing and especially when we are here [at home] it’s really powerful.”

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Just been there. Villa were poor and we should have put the game away earlier but love our quick recovery after their goal. Great atmosphere at the stadium, COYR!

Up North

Well played by the team,and I think Arteta and his team will iron out some of the issues. We need to stop our goalie being bullied on corners, one of our strongmen should act as bodyguard there. And we need to shoot at distance to vary the threat, top easy to ve compact im own box and defend.

Guns Up

Curious thought immediately after Arsenal have taken 8 shots from outside the area and a further 5 from 15-18 yds out. Think there’s zero concern with respect to needing to vary the threat.


Was a clear foul on Saka in the first half, if that’s given and we go into the break 2-0, the second half is far more comfortable for us. Not sure what they were smoking over at VAR tonight!


Completely and two fouls in fact! First a blatant handful of jersey, then an arm around his body holding him and then pulling/pushing him down. The shirt hold was clearly visible “live” on the TV feed, so how is that not called by VAR and with clearly no advantage gained?

Jeremy DG

I don’t want to whinge on what was a very positive night but I feel strongly that we are winning in spite of the officials. I’ve long thought the premier league, like most other leagues, is bent. Too much at stake for it not to be. Let’s be honest, going back many years there’s a lot of evidence to suggest it is and not just against Arsenal. There’s a reason why the referees operate within a mini cartel and var was pushed back on so vigorously. It was clearly thought that it’s introduction would limit the officials ability to influence… Read more »

A Different George

There is a really terrible standard of officiating. But, contrary to what you say, there is not the slightest evidence that it is corrupt–incompetent and often arrogant, but not a single piece of evidence suggesting anything more. Your “evidence” is absurd: supporters of every team feel the officiating is against them, every single team. They cannot all be right. Second–you are right that “too much is at stake”–which is precisely why a bent referee would be so dangerous to the betting industry, to take an obvious example. And to the whole “brand” that rakes in billions for its stakeholders. The… Read more »


No home team bias or big team bias last night. The opposite…

Jeremy DG

Sorry the profile of the premier league doesn’t factor into the conversation. For years officials were fixing games and betting with the mafia in the NBA (there’s a good documentary about this I think on Netflix) and this is a huge institution. They simply swept the cheating under the rug and blamed it all on one man when everyone was getting their fingers dirty. Are you saying with a straight face that the countless ridiculous decisions which have gone against this us, starting with that game at Man Utd where we lost the unbeaten record are a consequence of incompetence?… Read more »

Had to chip in

What is arrogant incompetence, if not corrupt?


I shudder to think of the kind of decisions United might get away with in our upcoming game with them. Fingers crossed it wont be the case.

Woolwich Tiern time

Newish ref… what country is he from? Que supris, Lancashire.

Dont get me wrong, know plenty of decent folk from the Northwest, just none of them referees

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

How Manchester born Paul Tierney gets to referee our next match, makes no sense. Hopefully he’s a City fan


It was a foul on Jesus by Martinez as well (the headlock). Straight pen and red card. What’s the issue exactly? Is t considered BANTZ by the refs?


Rather than being bribed directly by interested parties, I believe the referees are influenced by media, PGMOL and FA to dramatize matches as much as possible. From drama comes increased views of highlights and engagement on social media and match reports. Bad news travels faster and further than good news, hence an injustice from a match will be discussed by a lot more people than a correct refereeing decision. I also wouldn’t be surprised if some research has been done into the psychological aspect of witnessing injustices and forming emotional bonds. For example, if you were a casual viewer of… Read more »


I could accept it more if there was a review process and some acknowledgement that some decisions were poor and steps taken to avoid similar in the future. But the balance of refs coming from one part of the country, a referees organisation that appears to have no accountability and the shocking decisions last night (no home team bias there, the opposite) don’t help.

Woolwich Tiern time

So their Manager’s strategy was to double down on his dumb comments from earlier this year and commit to greater thuggary.

Any chance we can revel in some #GerrardOut on the pod?


Excellent shout


If you go back and look at that image of Arteta… He looks like a proud dad watching the children he taught how to cycle compete in Tour de France.

I’m proud of them too.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

We need to kill teams off like City do, when we’re so dominant. My health and nails can’t take too many nights like last night, or Fulham.
Martinelli was special…what a player


Great win last night! But guys who else becoming worried like I am? All of a sudden I feel like our great season about to crumple before our eyes… It happened last season, despite all the tLk about Spurs and qualifying for the CL, I think we rather handed it to them more than they clinching it. We had bad luck with injuries and everything unravelled for us. We have had a perfect start until now, and I can already sense Sunday being a downfall already, I hope it’s not going to happen so anyway. Guys please help me here,… Read more »

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