Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has sent his support to goalkeeper David Raya and revealed his simple plan to stop Aston Villa striker Ollie Watkins from scoring tomorrow.
The Gunners secured a sixth straight win in all competitions on Tuesday night following a 4-3 league triumph at Luton Town. Declan Rice made the difference with a dramatic 97th-minute winner.
The north London giants got out of jail after two high-profile errors from the goalkeeper but speaking in today’s press conference, Arteta only had positive things to say about the Spaniard.
The manager highlighted that Raya’s form has been ‘really impressive’ and added that the club have to support their players in the best possible way to get the best out of them.
He told Arsenal.com: “Look at his form and what he has achieved since he’s been with us, it’s really impressive, but what can I say? I have three great goalkeepers.”
“We have to support our players in the best possible way, we have to protect them and we have to get the best out of them. I would focus much more on that. Every player needs the right support and love and they deserve that.”
The Spanish tactician went on to praise Watkins, who has been tremendously consistent for Villa and said that the Gunners must not give him the ball in the box at Villa Park.
He added: “He’s been tremendously consistent over the last few years and he’s a real threat. Just like with other strikers, don’t give him the ball in the box! That’s his main quality.”
Arsenal are currently top of the Premier League with 36 points, two ahead of Liverpool and four in front of Unai Emery’s side, who have won their last 14 home league games.
The West Midlands outfit are looking to create history with a 15th-straight top-flight win at Villa Park. The Gunners were the last team to beat them in the division (4-2 win) at the stadium.
That was another tight affair which was decided after late heroics from Jorginho. His long-range shot hit the woodwork before deflecting off Emiliano Martinez into the back of the net.
Saturday’s game promises to be another thrilling contest and there could be plenty of goals involved. The Gunners will be aiming to stay top of the table with a fifth successive league win.