Mikel Arteta delighted with Arsenal’s ‘beautiful’ 6-0 CL win amid their ‘crazy’ fixture schedule

Lewis Oldham
Arsenal boss Arteta
Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta.

Head coach Mikel Arteta was delighted after Arsenal booked their place in the Champions League knockout stages in a “beautiful way”.

After PSV Eindhoven battled back from behind to beat Sevilla 3-2 in the early kick-off on Wednesday, Arsenal only needed a draw against RC Lens to qualify for the knockout stages.

After losing 2-1 to the Ligue Un side last month, the Gunners smashed six goals past their opponents in the reverse fixture at the Emirates to qualify for the last-16 and win Group B with a game to spare.

Kai Havertz, Gabriel Jesus, Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and Martin Odegaard all scored in the first half before Jorginho added Arsenal’s sixth from the penalty spot in the final ten minutes. 

Speaking post-match, Arteta was pleased that his side got the job done in style.

“Today was the day to get it done. We did it in a beautiful way,” Arteta said on TNT Sports. “We scored five goals against a really good side [in the first half].

“You can become really sloppy. And there were parts of the second half with different behaviours but we stayed really focused.”

On Arsenal taking an early lead: “They have to come out. We used the spaces really well.”

On winning the group with a game to spare: “It’s great because the schedule we have at the moment is crazy. We’re already thinking about Wolves in 72 hours.

“We have to demand more from each other. We’ll have to be well prepared for Wolves.”

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Saka meanwhile has insisted that Arsenal’s focus will quickly switch to this weekend’s Premier League game against Wolves.

“Everyone is really happy. It’s our first time back in the Champions League for a while and we’ve qualified with a game to go,” Saka said.

“When we first looked at our group we wanted to finish top. We’ve done that so can be proud.

“The boss is already reminding us to just enjoy a little bit and then focus on Wolves on Saturday.”

He added: “I try to be myself but when you cross the white line, it’s you against your opponent. I try my best to be better than him. Whatever I have to do to win, I do it.

“Not really [happy at coming off], I wanted to play 90 minutes. I understand his decision. Now I’m focused on Wolves, I want to do my best in that game.

“I’ll never forget that day [his debut five years ago]. It was a cold day like this. I’ve gone through a lot on and off the pitch since then.”

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