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Every word from Mikel’s post-Everton presser

Every word from Mikel's post-Everton presser

After guiding us to a 1-0 win at Everton at Goodison Park, Mikel Arteta tackled plenty of questions from the media who were keen to get his thoughts on the victory.

The manager was quizzed on a variety of topics, including the effect of his substitutions, Gabriel Martinelli’s injury status, David Raya’s debut, and much more.

Here is everything he had to say:

on winning our first game at Everton since 2017:

Really, really delighted with how we played and how we performed. We were unable to achieve that for a period of six years. We had both a challenge and an opportunity in front of us, so we carefully considered what we needed to accomplish and carried it out on the field. I believe that we controlled the game from beginning to end since we generated numerous opportunities, exerted significant dominance, and made no mistakes. It’s a huge compliment to the guys that they were able to accomplish that here because it’s not at all simple.

Regarding the minute details that decided the game, we work on everything—every manager must. The goal of game preparation is to make the opponent’s flaws obvious while keeping your own concealed. That is the result of our efforts, which led to the outcome. We did this in a variety of ways and were deft enough in the final pass, final move, and final finish to pull it off. Credit also goes to them because they did a fantastic job defending the box. If Martinelli’s goal had been permitted, the outcome of the game should have been considerably different. I’m ecstatic today, but it wasn’t and that’s all.

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Regarding Martinelli’s injury:

He felt it after the run for the goal, and usually he’s not one of the players to have muscular problems, but he had to leave the game, so we’ll see.

On the short corner strategies we used in the match:

Every situation is prepared in a way that we must keep to ourselves. As you can guess, we attempt to practice set-pieces even if we don’t want to surrender anything to the opposition. That’s a big deal for us as well because we create so many chances, play a lot of time in the final third, and need to be excellent at it because it gives all the clubs a chance to win the game.

regarding the fact that one of our replacements has scored in three straight games:

No one is guaranteed a spot, and I make no such promise. You are here to give your best effort and contribute to the team’s ability to win games, which is what we must accomplish. Everyone is subject to the same standards, thus no matter what occurs outside of us, it will never be more significant than that. That brings us to a conclusion.

I am very familiar with this crowd, and you could sense it as we managed to keep it under control. You have to try to keep as far away from those games as possible because they are a really excellent team when they get on that rollercoaster. There are times when they lift you and the game changes and the momentum switches. It is really challenging to escape from that, but I believe we have done so today.

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about the reasons he chose to start Raya in this match:

the same justification Eddie used to play here or why he played before Gabriel Jesus. Gabriel has won more titles than I have in that dressing room, yet no one has ever inquired as to why he hasn’t begun. It has always been done this way, but I can’t have two players in this position and not use them.

David has amazing qualities, just like Aaron and Karl do, but we need to put them to use because of how things are now.

I’ve just been a manager for three and a half years, so I don’t have a lot of experience. I had two situations in these two games where I could have changed the goalie at that very moment—after 60 minutes and at 85 minutes—but I didn’t. I can take a winger or a striker and put a central defender at the back to form a back five and hold that result, but I didn’t have the bravery to do it. We drew those games, which made me quite angry.

Someone will eventually do it, and you’ll find it unusual and wonder why, but explain why not? If another goalie has all the qualities you need, or if something is happening and you want to change the momentum, take action. I regret it, and now I want to encourage everyone to support the team they are required to play on, regardless of the opposition.

Regarding Raya’s sweeper-keeper skills:

We strive to help our players play to their strengths by adjusting to the skills they possess. We decided to try and help the team, that’s all. There are games to do some things and games to do other things that, in my opinion, were incredibly crucial against Everton.

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about the reaction he desires Aaron to have after being dropped:

It is exactly the same as Tomiyasu, as well as Jesus. It is precisely the same whether we play with 11 players instead of 10+1, 10, or 9.

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