Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Arteta aims for perfection against Chelsea as Arsenal search for long-term progress

SoccerNews in English Premier League 21 Aug 2021

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Mikel Arteta reckons Arsenal must be “perfect” to beat Chelsea on Sunday as he looks to get the north London club back among the Premier League challengers.

The Gunners started the new top-flight campaign in lacklustre fashion, going down to promoted Brentford 2-0 in the opening game.

A derby with Thomas Tuchel’s side is next up and, after defeating Chelsea 3-1 in the same fixture last term, Arteta knows what it will take to be successful again at Emirates Stadium.

“What we have to do is perform, perform at the highest level,” he replied when asked in a pre-match media conference if a draw would be a positive result.

“We know that to beat Chelsea we need to be perfect.

“Individually and collectively, we have to have an extraordinary game. The focus is going to be that.”

Arsenal also triumphed 1-0 at Stamford Bridge towards the end of the previous season, too. They have not won three in a row against Chelsea in the league since a successful run between January 2003 and February 2004.

While Chelsea could be buoyed on by their record signing Romelu Lukaku making his return, Arteta has added Martin Odegaard and Aaron Ramsdale to his squad.

Asked whether spending money came with added pressure, Arteta made clear it is all part of the long-term planning at the club to get them back contending again.

“We are a football club that tries to make the right decisions and move forward,” the Spaniard said.

“It’s never been down to me. When we have success, titles, or when we have difficulties, it’s down to us with me here, and it will be like this in the future.

“What we want to do is bring this club back to where it was. We are going to do that, the timing of it is a little more complicated than people think, but the aim is to do that.

“The only aim going into all matches is to win, nothing else. Achieving that as quickly as possible is the only objective we have.”

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