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Mikel Arteta pleased with how Arsenal handled emotions during Bayern Munich draw

SoccerNews in English Premier League 12 Apr 2024

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Mikel Arteta credited his players for dealing with Arsenal’s “emotional” 2-2 draw with Bayern Munich in their Champions League quarter-final first leg on Tuesday.

Bukayo Saka opened the scoring for the Gunners, who then conceded two quickfire goals before substitute Leandro Trossard struck to ensure the teams head to Germany all square.

Arteta admitted emotions were running high in north London but maintained that his players did well to deal with the pressure in order to score late on ahead of the second leg at Allianz Arena next week.

Speaking ahead of Arsenal’s Premier League clash with Aston Villa on Sunday, Arteta said: “There was a lot to take from the game and especially how we managed emotionally.

“We were very dominant and ahead and in 15 minutes we were behind a top side and had to deal with that emotionally, which is really tough to do and I think the team did brilliantly to manage that situation.

“It’s something which you have to work on daily (dealing with emotions) when you are there you are ready, leaving stuff in your system and as a team being able to deal with them.”

Arsenal, on 71 points, lead the title race on goal difference as they continue their bid to lift their first league title since 2003.

Spanish boss Arteta says his players want to do even more in their final eight league matches and in the Champions League to clinch silverware at the end of the season.

When asked how defining the next few weeks are for Arsenal, Arteta added: “Very, for sure because we can be in the semi-finals of the Champions League and top of the Premier League so every game is going to define what our future looks like.

“They are super excited about what we are doing, the way the team is performing, winning matches, they want more.

“We know the task and challenge ahead of us and how good we have to be to win but we will try.

Injury-stricken Villa, whose patchy form has seen them pick up one win in five, have slipped out of the top four behind Tottenham.

Despite Villa’s domestic wobble, Arteta talked up Sunday’s hosts and fellow Spanish manager Unai Emery, who recently celebrated his 1,000th game in management with a 2-1 Europa Conference League win over Lille.

Arteta said: “Unai’s had such a big impact at the club in terms of performances and consistency. It is unbelievable what he is doing in European competition and I’m impressed.

“He’s unbelievable and he’s done it in so many different countries and he’s been incredibly successful.

“He’s close to my home town and I have huge admiration for him and I wish him the best after Sunday. What he’s doing is really impressive.”

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