Spirit of Anfield draw may help deplete Arsenal in North London derby, says Mikel Arteta


rsenal plans to postpone the North London derby on Sunday as he assesses his squad at his training base this afternoon.

Mikel Arteta believes the experience of Arsenal’s draw at Liverpool last night will be of great help to the Gunners as they prepare to face Tottenham with an exhausted squad on Sunday.

Arteta praised his team’s “resilience” and “spirit” after holding on to a goalless draw at Anfield, despite a game lasting over an hour with ten men after Granit Xhaka’s red card.

The result effectively turns next week’s Carabao Cup semi-final second leg against the same opponents into a knockout game, but before that, Arteta’s men face a North London derby away from home. this week-end.

Xhaka’s red card, along with punches for Bukayo Saka and Cedric Soares, added to Arteta’s selection woes, with Covid, injuries and CAN absences having already exhausted his squad.

Many of Arsenal’s remaining players looked exhausted full-time at Anfield, but the Spaniard will have no choice but to ask almost all of them to leave – and he believes they will be better after having this battle.

“It certainly gives them the experience that they are able to do this,” Arteta said on Friday. “This resilience to do what they did last night is based on your mind, your belief, and the fact that you’re never going to give up, and take on any challenge that lies ahead – and do your best.

“Sometimes you still have to extend that and against the team we played last night it was necessary and most of the players did.”

The draw under difficult circumstances against Liverpool came just 10 days after the Gunners outscored Manchester City in the Premier League before losing to a Rodri goal in the stoppage time, having again sent off a man.

These results and performances remain in contrast to the heavy losses Arsenal suffered against the same teams earlier in the season and Arteta sees signs of progress.

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“I think we are in the right direction,” he added. “Yesterday we had to play an extremely difficult game, 70 minutes with 10 men, but I saw a lot of leadership on this pitch from very young players and that encourages me a lot because they understood what it is. had to, they were up for the challenge and they showed real struggle and real resilience to do what they did.

Sunday’s game at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium will see Arteta face Antonio Conte for the first time in his managerial career.

The Gunners beat Spurs 3-1 at the Emirates earlier in the season, during Nuno Espirito Santo’s doomed tenure, but Arteta believes Conte’s presence in the dugout means his team can shoot little. this victory.

“What Antonio brings is a lot of clarity in the way he plays,” he said. “He masters what he has done, he is an extremely successful coach. They play differently, they have different principles that they apply and it will be a really tough game.

“We know what happened in September doesn’t have any value now, it’s a new game and really important for us.”

standard Sport

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