The full transcript of Mikel Arteta’s post-match press conference vs Liverpool.
How significant is it to win the Community Shield?
“It’s always great to come to Wembley and get another trophy under the belt. We had a big challenge today against this incredible opponent and as well because some of the players only had one session with us, but it shows the courage and ambition and the way they want to win.”
Can you maintain this before the season starts?
“I don’t know, it’s a very unusual pre-season. We’re going to lose a lot of players tomorrow because they are going to their national teams. But we will try to adapt as well as we can, try to keep our players in the best possible condition.”
Another excellent performance from Emi Martinez. Can you talk about his situation?
“We are in the market but there is a lot of speculation. Emi has shown in the last few months what he’s capable to do for this football club, I am convinced he has the level to play for us consistently at that level, he showed that today in a final. I cannot stop the speculation or what people write about us.”
Have there been any offers for Emi? “I don’t know, I don’t want”
Surely you can’t be considering selling a player of Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ quality?
“He has to be able to compete everyday in training, to compete at this level not once every three months but every three days.
The way he is at the moment is showing me that he can do it, the mentality and the way he’s going about every single detail, the preparation is much better than before and I’m delighted and very happy for him. He’s been changing a lot of things around him to become the player he is.”
He said he’s an Arsenal player until he’s told otherwise so is it on you?
“The best way to show a player how his manager thinks about him is to give him a chance to play or not. Today in a final again, he started, played the 90 minutes like against City in the semi-final and Chelsea in the final.”
Is there any update on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s contract?
“No. I keep saying the same thing. I try to do my job which is convince him he is in the right place, that he has the right environment here to produce like he has done today and like he did three weeks ago [in the FA Cup].
I’m very positive he is going to sign. But there are a lot of things involved in a contract deal and we are trying to solve them.”
What about his overall performance? The move for the goal too..
“Yeah, I think the move from the team was really, really good. He put the ball all the time where it belongs.
The way he took the penalty, he wanted to take the last one and he took it really well and another trophy for Arsenal. I’m delighted with his performance with and without the ball.”
How quickly does his situation need to be sorted?
“I don’t know, I’m not worried because we can try to do as much as possible to convince the player or tell them what we think and put all the cards on the table to try and keep him here but after is the part of the player and the agent that have to agree.
“I think we built a really good relationship between us and hopefully we can do it. Now I am confident and happy, I see how he behaves everyday and how much he smiles in training. Believe me, with Auba that’s a really good sign.”
How do you turn one-off performances at Wembley to sustained Premier League top four challenges?
“That’s a different task. I don’t think it’s a one-off either when you beat the teams that we have in the last two months consistently.
Obviously after 10 months, the table showed last season that we are very far away, the gap is enormous and we have to try and close that gap as quick as possible. In order to do that we have a lot of aspects in the game we have to improve.”