Thursday, February 29, 2024

Turner: We learn from it and move forwards

Manchester City may have come out on top in last night’s much-anticipated FA Cup clash with Arsenal at the Etihad but the Gunners can take “a lot of positives”, according to goalkeeper Matt Turner.

A much-rotated side held their own against Erling Haaland and co. in a first half that saw the visitors have the better chances.

The deadlock was eventually broken just past the hour mark by a precise finish by defender Nathan Ake and despite a late rally, led by substitute Gabriel Martinelli, Arteta’s men couldn’t find an equaliser that would have forced a replay.

City visit the Emirates for the first league clash of the season in just under three weeks and Turner is adamant that last night’s encounter is something to build on.

“We know how much the cup means to this club and the supporters and to us, so we’re really disappointed that we didn’t advance to the next round,” he told

“But there are a lot of positives to take from the performance and stuff to build on for the future.

“We didn’t really give them much for most of the game. I felt like we defended our box really well but when you give world-class players space on the edge of the box, we didn’t do enough to clear the ball afterwards.

“It’s disappointing to concede in the fashion we did, especially with some of the chances we created during the match, but we did and that’s that. We have to learn from it and continue to move forward.”

For his part, manager Arteta was pleased with the way the players he rotated into the starting lineup coped with the occasion. In addition to Turner, Kieran Tierney, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Rob Holding, Fabio Vieira and Leandro Trossard all got useful minutes, as did second half substitute Sambi Lokonga.

“I’m very proud of the boys, they fully deserved the chance to play,” reflected Arteta. 

“We kept saying that everyone is important and if that’s the case, they have to play, and they gave me another reason today to keep trusting them and have them contribute to the team.

“Now I’m disappointed and I think that we are all disappointed because we wanted to beat them, and we wanted to be in the cup as it’s a very important competition. Tomorrow, we’ll maybe look at the [upcoming] game a bit differently.”

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Boy Bastin

Quite right. It’s important to learn from defeats, albeit a narrow one in this case.

A “what if” certainly, but I can’t help thinking we could well have won it if there hadn’t been so many changes – at least from the start of the game anyway. However, back to the PL and keeping up the momentum there.

Funsho Patrick

City is the global metric for measuring football standards in the pep era…we went toe to toe with their best team away! With a heavily rotated squad as well…..Kudos to Mikel! He did it with a fraction of the funds available to big teams the world over…’s preparation for champions League matches away next season and a huge confidence booster…. losing may just keep us humble and hungry….the speed of Arteta ball, rotation… unbelievable at times yesterday…

Boy Bastin

Yes. Don’t get me wrong, it was a fine performance and it was clearly a narrow loss – but it was a loss nevertheless and perhaps fewer changes could have made a difference in a very tight game. It’s all hindsight of course. However, I think we could all agree that a win would have given us an extra boost, no matter how small, for the PL games to come with them.


I was pleased with how good we were, given the changes. First team would have won and we’d have had a better chance with TP on all the match.


Positive point is we know how to contain Haaland.

Boy Bastin

Hope so, but I’m not sure it works that way. Any top striker will always be a threat even if he didn’t score the last time two particular teams met. Every game is different and the action will inevitably create chances for players.

I’m sure Pep will look at Haaland’s effectiveness (or lack of it) and come up with something to re-test us in a few weeks time.


Agreed. Also Haaland is super young and still getting better, and will have learned something from us shutting him down like that, so I’m sure he’ll be back better and trying different things himself, and he might well get better service from his midfielders which were pretty bad tonight by their standards. Our lads will need to be at the top of their game, perhaps even better than tonight.


He’s pretty lazy off ball. Stands around off side a lot of the game. You can see why there is all this talk about city maybe not being at their best with him in. He’s a bit like Kane. He bends the will and style of the team for his personal success (goals) which maybe makes them less effective than they could be. Tbh, I thought we were the better team and I think we’ll see that in there expected goals. Their goalie had a blinder. Super impressed with tross, looks a heck of a player.


I’m sure Pep will sort out whatever laziness he might have, if there’s one coach who could do it. Players who don’t play his way tend to find themselves outcast, even massive superstars like Zlatan or Eto’o, and I’m sure Haaland knows it. So I wouldn’t count on him being as poor again… but with our best defenders playing 90mins we should be able to handle him either way, and even if he scores one with our first choice front 4 i expect us to put a couple in and beat them, especially at home.


I don’t think Pep would’ve bought him if he had his way – he’s not his type. He’s just desperate to win the CL at City. Highly structured football is great for league play, but knockout tournaments need a guy who scores even when the team’s not in rhythm.

Inspector norse

It is Pep who has made the shitty sheiks worse by playing him like a target man when he is not at all lazy and actually pretty complete as a striker, this is Guardiola’s work and we should probably thank him for it. It will get Håland a shitload of goals, but the team is worse off. Pep has created a monoculture and the crop is goals, no good if they only come from Håland.


this is not really how pep works though is it? city were unable to impose their game on us and, if anything, we “controlled” the game for long stretches and only came under pressure in a few short bursts, which we handled well overall. this seems to me to be a big change to the status quo. we are forcing pep and city to come up with new ideas and adapt their game to counter ours. shows how far we have come really – i hope we really bring it to the upcoming league game against City because, if we… Read more »


Is it just me or does Haaland look like a cartoon Viking character dressed in football gear in real life to others too?


I think he looks just like a cabbage patch doll that were very popular in the eighties/ nineties. Apparently they are worth a nice few quid if you have a birth certificate with one.
my God everyone has the right to be ugly but he abuses the privilege!!


I am also pleased by limiting that burly striker to none.


If Holding didn’t get a booking and Saliba wouldn’t have come on, we would have an advantage in the upcoming PL fixture, as Haaland would learn how to deal with one of the best defender in the league. However, i’m not concerned.

As long as we contain Citys midfield, Haaland is out of the picture.


There was nothing in City’s performance last night that made me feel a full strength Arsenal side shouldn’t feel comfortable feeling they can beat. Six players out away against their full strength is considerably ‘weakened’ by any metric yet we were better than them before Partey came off.
I also felt Saka was playing ‘with the handbrake on’ almost as if he sub-consciously felt how most of us feel: this match is way down the priority list in terms of importance.


Exactly how I felt.

A Different George

Well, I think Saka is a great player, but he is part a team and that team–especially the right side–is infinitely better when Odegaard is on the pitch to combine with him. Also, we should admit that Nathan Ake was very good indeed against him.


I am very worried with the midfield situation and leaving it this late to start bidding for players is worrying. even the most optimistic Arsenal fan knew Partey will have his usual 4 – 8 weeks on the sideline sooner or later.

Caicedo is an amazing player and i know his ceiling is very high but rather than pay 60 – 70 m for Caicedo, I will pay 100m for Rice.


Make sure that you tell the club asap, I’m sure they will be delighted that you will.


Thought he did really well considering the quality of the opposition, it’s comforting to know we might have a very decent backup GK in case he’s called upon

Public Elneny

Yeah, he had a couple of iffy moments – the early pass that evaded Partey and being in no man’s land for Haaland’s first half lob attempt. But he had a lot of very marginal and crucial decisions to make about whether to intervene or retreat, and he made it work pretty much every time. Very quick off his line on through balls and crosses – need to see more of him to know whether he can repeat that tactic consistently, or if he was playing beyond his comfort zone and exceeded himself to not be caught out this time.… Read more »


For us it is potentially four less games and the chance for players to rest.
This is reflected by Arteta’s team choice for the match.
The game showed us that while Man City are strong and to be respected, we can compete with them and have nothing to fear.


I’m sorry, but that picture makes me want to puke.


If Manchester City did not win the game, they would not be smiling at the cameras like that. My opinion.

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