Unai Emery faced the press today (Friday) ahead of Sunday’s trip to Manchester City are he had plenty to say on a range of subjects.
We’ve summarised the best bits for you here:
On Denis Suarez
“I know [him]. Yesterday he trained individually and today with the group. I think he is good. I think he will adapt quickly. I think he is a player with quality and I think he can help us with his quality but also with his ambition to do something important here. It is a good challenge for him to help us.
On Suarez adapting to Premier League football
“First of all is the language, he speaks the language, which is important for us. Second, he player with Manchester City with the young players, with the young team, and he also has big experience in Spain; with Seville, with Villarreal. He also played a semi-final with Villarreal against Liverpool in the Europa League and afterwards he played with Barcelona, not in the first 11 a lot of times but he helped them. He also played Champions League football.”
How have Arsenal changed since the opening game of the season
“Not much. Our challenge is the same with every team but we are playing against the best and Manchester City are the best. With Liverpool, they are doing very big things and are working very hard.
“Maybe they can lose some matches but these are accidents because, usually, against Newcastle, in another match, they would have won. When they are playing at home, for us it will be very difficult but we are looking to show everybody that we can and we want to and the players think with very big ambition to show their best performance against them.”
On Hector Bellerin’s return
“Big injuries take a long time. This season will be impossible.”
On Laurent Koscielny
“He trained today and worked and we are positive with him.”
On Ainsley Maitland-Niles
“Today he did not train but he will do tomorrow.”
On Henrikh Mhikitaryan
“He started to train with us today and he is training normally. He is with us now.”
Will Denis Suarez play against Manchester City?
“Now, we need every player to be ok and to be with the mentality to play on Sunday. We have some injuries but we have other players ready to play and to help the team with their quality, their performance, with their condition. On Sunday, I am positive with the possibility of different players to play.”
Could Suarez start?
“I am thinking about all the players. The decision will be made tomorrow but, if he starts, I have confidence in him.”
Where do you see Suarez fitting in?
“He can play right, left, at the side – all the positions in the attacking third. He played with us in Seville as a left winger, in Villarreal more as a right winger, and in Barcelona he played more inside. The possibility and capacity is all different.”
Where does the signing of Suarez leave Mesut Ozil?
“It is no change for him. Suarez is coming to Arsenal because we have a lot of problems with wingers.”
Will Ozil still be captain if he starts?
“I think the message every week is clear. We have four captains. I don’t know if you’ve been to my press conferences before. I am going to repeat; The first captain is Laurent Koscielny, when he has injuries and cannot play, the second is Petr Cech; third is Aaron Ramsey, after this: Mesut Ozil.
“When Ozil is playing with Cech, Cech is captain. When he is playing with Laurent, Laurent is captain. When he is playing with Aaron, Aaron is captain and when he is playing and the others are not playing, he is the captain.
“In the last match, we didn’t play Petr Cech, we didn’t play Laurent Koscielny, we didn’t play Aaron Ramsey, we played Mesut Ozil so he was the captain. After that, it is Granit Xhaka and Nacho Monreal.”
On the club’s transfer business
“The club was working all that it could and we were speaking about the possibility of bringing in three players but only if they can come here with our condition and also if we think they can help us with a good performance, better than the players we have hear.
“All that is come in is Denis Suarez and we are happy and the club worked very well.”
On the state of the squad
“I used a lot of information about the last years in the Premier League, the table, the other teams, also our teams. With the 47 points we have in the league, the last four years there was no other time Arsenal had the same points in this moment.
“Also, sometimes, for example three years ago, Leicester were first in the table with 50 points and sometimes the table is giving us more chances with 47 points, another time it is giving us less. Our points tally is good. We need to improve defensively but we need to continue on our way to doing that. On balance we are doing very well.
“We are scoring in our attacking moments. Our attacking statistics are very big and we want to continue like that and also to find the balance and not conceded a lot of chances.
“This transfer window is not easy, it is not possible to change a lot of things. I am very happy with the players we have here and there are players recovering from injuries who can help in these three months left of the season.
“We have also a big motivation in the Premier League first and second in the Europa League. Sunday will be a big, tough match but also a big chance for us to show everybody who we are. It will be very difficult but I trust in my players.”