Thursday, December 8, 2022

Arteta admits hectic schedule is catching up with his players

Mikel Arteta says October’s frantic run of matches is starting to catch up with his squad but says things are only going to get worse after Christmas.

After resting Gabriel Jesus for the match against Bodo/Glimt, the boss has hinted the Brazilian may not be fit enough for Sunday’s clash with Leeds.

It sounds as though Khayon Edwards, who was on the bench on Thursday, will make the trip to Elland Road with the 19-year-old likely to provide back-up to Eddie Nketiah if Jesus is absent.

Adding to our problems, the boss has also called for patience with Oleksandr Zinchenko who continues to struggle with a calf issue.

Pressed on whether the Thursday / Sunday routine is catching up with his players, Arteta said:

“I think it is already here, but I think after the World Cup it is going to be even worse, so I think it is good preparation for what is coming.

“Now, the trick is how are we going to prepare for Leeds, mentally and physically.

“It’s going to be a battle – we know the way they play and how intense it is going to be and the crowd that they have, so it’s going to be a challenge. We have to be at our best again to win there.”

Given the players only arrived back from Norway yesterday afternoon and then set off for Leeds this afternoon, there’s not been much time for pre-game prep.

“We’ll give them some ideas, some video, keep them active to recover well and that’s it.

“There is no time so we have to travel back to London, and then travel to Leeds. We’ll have an activation on Saturday but it’s not really a training session, it’s not possible.”

Leeds may not have won in five games but Arteta is clearly wary of the threat they pose and the feverish atmosphere the home crowd is capable of producing.

“Last year it was incredible – even when we were winning 3-0 that crowd is something that I’ve never seen before, and you can sense that. Every time I watch them and I’ve seen some games already and you can hear the noise, so we know how it’s going to be.”

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Naked Cygan

1 or 2 loan signings in the summer would have helped with this seasons crazy schedule, but the past is the past and we can’t do much about it till Jan. I am still confident with the players we rested and with our team we can get the 3 points. We just have to show the hunger to keep going till the final whistle and don’t let our guard down. Leeds are are though team to play against away.

SOMK

Arthur tearing up a storm for Liverpool I see. In all seriousness I’d like to put the days of Arsenal signing loan players firmly behind us, when has one ever worked out for us? It’s one thing if the team is aiming to just get into Europe, but we’re beyond that now, plus it frustrates opportunities for younger players who have been drilled with an Arsenal football education to step up which can narrow option moving forwards and send the wrong message out to younger squad members in general. For example if we’d signed the emergency loan striker last January… Read more »

Tom 007

The squad needs to focus on the basics n be strong mentally as Leeds will be physically strong n fresh.

Mayor McCheese

Get on the horn to the U S of A! I hear “Spic and Span” and “Shake and Bake” are looking for rebrands!

Badaab

Leeds under marsch have been a pretty petulant and aggressive side- they’ll be out to kick us and get the crowd going; it’s imperative we start quickly and keep the pressure on to avoid a battle.

Boy Bastin

Yes, we’ll need to win what’s likely to be a tough, physical, game without picking up injuries or, indeed, yellow/red cards as well if possible. Arsenal will need cool heads on (and off – Mikel) the pitch in that kind of atmosphere.

C.B.

Worst still next season assuming we have CL football midweek. Definitely need to strengthen our squad and hope ESR and Zinny are back and fit. And Jesus too.

Kostas

I think our good form kept us from losing our sh*t with Zinny’s prolonged injury.
However I am very close on doing so. He is giving us another layer

Badaab

Congestion won’t be as bad next year as there won’t be a world cup in the middle of the season that forced an early start and busy October/November.
Player welfare is taking a backseat to profit for those who need it least.

RockyRog58

Let’s keep positive play with the same intensity and not get involved with any Revie like Leeds shithousery ! Fully confident in Eddie he’s grown up got stronger & is always a threat C’mon the Gunners !!!

Boy Bastin

October in particular was always going to be very busy. So far, we’ve certainly done as well as could be expected but as Arteta indicates it’s the cumulative effect that all the games are having on the players – and not just the first-choice team, but the squad. There’s nothing that can be done now except keep pressing on and hope for the best regarding injuries etc. What we don’t want, or need, are any suspensions. The January window offers some hope but it’s a way off still and there may not be the players available that we want/need. Clubs… Read more »

WGABFG

Oh dear… and we still have 139 games left to play in October…

Nainsley Aitland Miles

139 139 undefeated, 139 139 I say, 139 139 undefeated, playing football the Arteta way.

Man Manny

All the top teams are feeling the pinch, except, maybe City. We still have enough to bank 3 points tomorrow…and Soton and Forest too.
The next two EL games against PSV are massive. We must get 4 points, at least, to ensure top of the group, then our first team can be properly rested before the game at Stamford Bridge.

Naked Cygan

We can still get away with 2 draws 2 points from the PSV games and easily finish 1st. PSV already dropped points and they have to play Bodo Away. Our last game with Zurich at home is easy 3 points in the bag.

Jeremy

And spurs, somehow. It seems like nobody paid attention to how we destroyed them and continue to get lulled into a boredom coma by Conte ball before falling asleep on the pitch, allowing their gormless striker to ‘trip over them’ and score his obligatory penalty.

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