It was not a great result for Arsenal last night but before Sokratis got sent off for a second yellow in 20 minutes and then suddenly we were playing like a Championship side. Unai Emery thinks that the red card was the pivotal moment and it will all be different when they come to the Emirates next week. The boss said: “The first 40 minutes I think we controlled, we scored and we didn’t concede good chances to them. But after this red card, it’s different. It’s more than we wanted and I think we can do better.
“But the result is for the first match and for the first 90 minutes. Losing 3-1 is hard for us, but we are going to start the next match, next week with 11 against 11 and with the same respect we have had in the first half, the first 40 minutes. We are going to do that at home against them. But we need to also change our performance and I have the confidence with our players, with our supporters helping us to create one big atmosphere to give us a good spirit against them to come back.”
He is putting a lot of hope in us coming back at the Emirates, but he refused to blame Sokratis for his two yellow cards and thinks the players need to learn how to deal with being a man down, something we didn’t do very well last night. “I think we changed more than we want, but a red card can come. Two yellow cards and it’s the referee’s decision. After, I think we must learn to play – when it’s coming like today – with one less player on the pitch. Not a good experience today, because we couldn’t do our work in difficult moments, in difficult minutes, with one less player, like we wanted. I think we can do better.
“I am positive in the first 40 minutes because I think, with respect to them, we imposed our gameplay in these moments. We can maybe score a second goal because we deserved to, but after it is really very different in the match. I cannot say to Sokratis because he has very good commitment, he has very good behaviour and he received two yellow cards in two actions of playing.”
And then he yet again put his faith in us coming back next week. “But we are going to think, for the next week, we are going to start 11 against 11, without Sokratis and without Lacazette, but we have players. Like the first 40 minutes, we can do it with our supporters also, to have the possibility to come back. But we know this result is not good. It is bad and it is going to be tough for us. But we need to do with focus and with our players, this possibility to come back.”
We certainly do need to focus, but with this awful defeat we now have to pick ourselves up for the visit of Man United on Sunday. Another defeat and our confidence will be shot completely….