Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta during an Arsenal press conference

Mikel Arteta on Bukayo Saka’s fitness, William Saliba’s injury, Arsenal team news and Chelsea

Mikel Arteta has been facing the media ahead of Arsenal’s trip to Chelsea on Saturday in the Premier League.

The Arsenal boss was asked questions on several topics ahead of the game, including the fitness of players such as Bukayo Saka and William Saliba, as well as his relationship with Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino.

Here is a selection of what he had to say.

On Chelsea

“It’s a big game. There is a big history between the two clubs. I’ve been really impressed by Chelsea. I think they deserve much more than they’ve got. I think what Mauricio is doing in a really short time is phenomenal and we are going to have to be at our best.”

On Aaron Ramsdale fearing for his England place

“It’s not easy for any player when he is not playing as much as he would like to. The only way to do is is to work harder, to show the passion than you have for the game, to contribute to the team in a different way and when you get the opportunity, do your best and help the team win the game.”

On the latest team news for Chelsea

“Not a lot. We haven’t had a lot of players. We’re going to do our first training session today and we’ll know more after the session.”

On whether he knows his starting XI for Chelsea

“I do have the idea but I have to see them all together today to see how everyone is because we have a lot of people travelling around the world with a lot of minutes in the legs.”

On William Saliba’s toe injury and whether it could plague him all season

“Hopefully not, but he’s been carrying that for weeks now and we have to use that time to settle and we believe that it was the best moment to do it.”

On whether Saliba is a doubt for Saturday

“Depending on how he’s able to train today.”

On Bukayo Saka’s fitness

“He’s been working so hard to be fit for this game, so let’s see where he is at  today. He had a couple of days of that he needed as well, but the rest has not been rest for him because he needed to do the treatment and train to be ready for Chelsea.”

On whether Saka wants to play on Saturday

“I’m sure he wants to play. I don’t see any player there who doesn’t want to be in the starting XI.”

On Jack Wilshere being targeted for the Colorado Rapids job

“I’m really happy that Jack is part of the set-up. I think he’s done really well and brought something I think was really necessary in the academy and around the place. These things are going to happen when people are doing well, he is going to get traction and then it will come down to him to make what he believes is the best decision for his career.”

On Pochettino

“It was my first professional opportunity in Paris and we arrived at the same time. We lived together in a hotel for three months. He was critical [in helping me]. He’s been one of the most influential persons in my football career. First of all as a player he took me under his arm and looked after me like a little brother and a big part of the success I had in Paris was because of him. He gave me as lot of confidence, a lot of advice. He’s been a role model for me since that day. Not only when I was a player, but as a manager as well because when I had to make a decision to leave playing and start my coaching career, he had a big say in that and I will always be grateful for what he’s done for me.”