Mikel Arteta faced the media on Friday afternoon at Arsenal’s London Colney training centre to preview Sunday’s Premier League clash at West Ham.
The Gunners boss answered questions on several topics, including the latest team news, the potential introduction of blue cards in football and Jorginho’s future.
Here is a selection of what Arteta had to say:
On the latest Arsenal team news:
“We have a few still in contention, they have been evolving really well. Tomorrow we have another training session and we are hopeful we will have a few back and we can put out a competitive squad.”
On Bukayo Saka’s fitness:
“He’s been recovering this week and he looks OK.”
On Thomas Partey’s fitness:
“He’s progressing really well, but it’s a bit too soon to tell you exactly when we’re going to have him back.”
On Gabriel Jesus – Any update?
“No, no update.”
On whether he was surprised by the fuss over Arsenal’s post-match celebrations against Liverpool:
“No. Because they told me today, so I didn’t know anything about it.
“But I love it because I’ve seen managers at the Emirates on their knees inside the pitch. I’ve seen very big managers walking onto the pitch. I’ve seen managers going across the touchline. I’ve seen that all, in the Premier League.
“Personally I love it because it brings passion and emotion to the game, but it’s done in a natural way and a unique way. I think it’s great.
“But that’s my opinion and a lot of people might have something [of an opinion] very different to mine.
On Odegaard celebrating with Stuart, the club photographer:
“That is something that happened because there is a relationship. They do it every day here at the training ground.
“But people are entitled to have their opinion when you do something publicly. There are going to be opinions, some of them positive, some of them not so positive.”
New skill unlocked 📷 pic.twitter.com/NMR1teOU9V— Arsenal (@Arsenal) February 4, 2024
On blue cards and sin bins possibly being introduced into football:
“I don’t know whether we are going to get there to be fair. We’ve got a lot going on now with decisions, with technology, with what has come in.
“So I don’t know if we are ready for that yet.”
On whether he thinks it would be a good or bad idea:
“Who knows? Maybe it’s going to be tested very, very well before we introduce it at this level.”
On Martin Odegaard’s form:
“His overall performance, his aggression without the ball. The influence he has on our team every time we get to certain areas. The leadership is developing day in, day out and his attitude.
“And he’s always available. So I think he’s having a great season.
On Jorginho and whether he will get a new contract:
“Well, I’m really happy with him. That’s all I can say. The contract situation is more for Edu and the board to manage. But the capacity he has in big matches to affect the game is tremendous.”
On whether he would like to keep Jorginho:
“I am really happy with him, that’s all I can say. When we imagined what he could bring to the team and how he could make us better, he’s doing exactly that or even better.”