“Shocking moment”Every word Mikel Arteta said on James Maddison and Postecoglou

How much is Odegaard’s long-term contract a lift to the side?

Great news for the club and the team. I’m really happy for him as well, he fully deserves that. It just shows there are many ways to make it. There are many pathways to arrive to where you want to be. At the end it’s about finding a place where you feel comfortable, valued and where you can express your talent. I think he’s found that place. He’s loved and respected by everybody and he fully deserves what he’s doing.

How much better can he get?

We don’t know. They (the players) don’t have to look for a ceiling. They have to try to be better every single day, being humble enough to admit there is still room for them (to improve) with what you can do individually every single day, which he does. The other thing is the contributions of all the players you have around you. When you have players who have the quality to make you better, that’s a huge bonus. You are as good as your team and the players around him elevate his qualities and that’s why he’s better and better.

A new challenge, a new opportunity. Obviously, they have a new manager that has done really, really well. He has changed the vibe and everything around the club. Different style, as well. Adapt to that, be ourselves and produce the performance we need to beat them.

What do you think of Ange Postecoglou?

I really like him. I had players and I know players who had him and they always speak really, really highly of him. Obviously that is not a coincidence. You can tell straight away that he is fitting in right away. That is the beauty of this league we have top, top managers, top competition and every game is very difficult.

What are your memories of this fixture?

Yes I have many. The recent one is last year’s which was beautiful. Living with our supporters the moment when you manage to win the game and that satisfaction you give to everybody because it is a special day for everybody. So hopefully we can reproduce that again.

Has it been so hard dropping Ramsdale because he is so likeable and fan favourite?

Yes it is hard, but with other players it is the same. Aaron is an exceptional character, he has got this charisma and this aura around him, and we all know that and I fully understand that. It happens with many other players, you see the reception Emile got the other night and it’s sending a message that we really like him and I really like him, and we have to deal with that. But at the end, you have to make the team, the line-up of what you feel and the best way to prepare the game.

Everyone known about Martin since he was 15, now playing best football of career, how has he got to this stage?

He was obviously a special player and everything went through him. He was the one that glided everything together. They did it in many different ways from many different areas of the pitch. Now it’s a bit different. They have a different style from the last two coaches as well. They, for sure, have some specificity in certain moments that they make with certain players so I think it’s a very different team.

It must be a bit of a relief not to have Kane involved?

We tend to forget quickly. We just focus on the team that they have and what we have to do to play the best possible way to create problems to them.


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