Arsenal beat Brentford 2-1 at the Emirates Stadium this afternoon, and manager Mikel Arteta has opened up on what he enjoyed about the performance.
Emile Smith Rowe and Bukayo Saka got the goals which saw us go over the 90-minute mark with a two-goal advantage, before the Bees managed to score a late consolation goal, and while it took us into the second-half before we broke the deadlock, the manager claimed to be ‘very happy’ with the entire performance.
“I’m very happy, especially with the way we started the game,” Arteta told Arsenal Media. “We had really clear intentions, a real purpose to attack them, be consistent, take risks, be direct, have enough runs in behind and threat, put the ball in the box, arrive with numbers, counter-press, don’t allow them to make the transition that they want to do.
“We really controlled the game I think, we played really, really well, but we didn’t score the goal that for sure we merited in that period and then the game is open.
“We started the second half really well, scored a really good goal from Emile and then it was about being patient, score the second one and close the game and we’ve done that. But at the end, unfortunately, we concede a goal on a set piece.
“I think the crowd was really supportive as well because they could see the intentions of the team and what we were trying to do. One thing is to be patient, one thing is to be passive or slow and we played with the right level of urgency, determination and speed, as well as being patient to understand when we had to attack and the moment to expose certain spaces that were available.”
While it was a good opening sequence, the last 30 minutes of the first-half was a little frustrating with very little success, but the team clearly managed the game well overall, and every point we can bring home at this point is giving us every chance of finishing inside the top four.