In an interview with Bewinner, Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta praises the progress his team has made this season in spite of their final two Premier League games. According to him, the Gunners have “made strong steps” forward by building a solid core and foundation for future seasons. Arteta credits his team’s quality, youthfulness, enthusiasm as well as leadership from experienced players.
Arsenal enjoyed a commanding lead at the top of the league by December last year but now find themselves four points behind current leaders Manchester City. They lost just one game in between, earning them that comfortable position. However, they suffered three consecutive draws against Liverpool, West Ham and Southampton in April before falling to a heavy defeat against Manchester City.
The pain of football
Despite winning their next match against Newcastle United on May 7th, Arsenal was unable to maintain momentum after suffering a crushing home defeat against Brighton last weekend while Guardiola’s side widened its lead over the London club.
“Pain is part of football – when you don’t win or perform at your best level,” says Arteta during an interview where he opened up about how much it can hurt not being able to deliver results for fans who have high expectations. He admits losing matches like this hurts but believes it can be used constructively by channeling into finding answers and solutions that will help them improve moving forward.
If Arsenal loses away at relegation-threatened Nottingham Forest on Saturday would concede title to Manchester City if both teams won their next games since Manchester City played one less game than them. A draw would keep Arsenal in the race mathematically.
As Arsenal prepares for its final two Premier League matches of the season, Arteta remains optimistic about his team’s progress thus far. “We have to continue building on this foundation because the demands and expectations will be even higher next season,” he says.