Arteta on Moyes, Rice and the title race

  • by Staff Writer
  • Friday, 9th February 2024

Mikel Arteta has paid tribute to his former manager and now-nemesis David Moyes ahead of Arsenal's visit to Stratford this weekend.

The Gunners will be attempting to prevent West Ham from securing a third win of the season when the two teams meet at the London Olympic Stadium on Sunday afternoon, following defeat in the Carabao Cup and at the Emirates back in December.

And Arteta maintained his players will have their work cut out against a West Ham team that, while on a poor run of form are what he described as a "really good side".

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"He [Moyes] is a really experienced manager who’s extremely good at getting the best out of his team," said Arteta, speaking to the media in his pre-match press conference on Friday lunchtime.

"He does it in various ways. He’s extremely good at managing the group, he’s a really competitive manager who understands when you get an edge in the game and wait for the moments in the game to punish you. His trajectory and what he’s done at West Ham is incredible.

"There are certain reasons [for our poor record in Stratford]. They are really difficult to beat at home. We are going to have to be at our best to give ourselves the best chance to win the game."

And Arteta also expects former Hammer Declan Rice to be given a warm reception when he returns to Stratford as an opposiing player for the second time.

"I always say that when you come back, it is very difficult because the opponents are focused on giving support to their own team," he said. "As well, I’ve seen so much appreciation from the club when he left, what they did for him and the way people talk about him. That’s very important as well."

Meanwhile the Spaniard played down suggestions that his team's celebrations following their win against Liverpool last weekend were not over-the-top, as has been claimed by some sections of the media.

"I see a lot of games and in game three, game six, game eight, there are managers and teams celebrating a lot, fans celebrating a lot," he responded.

"It’s so tough to win in this league. For sure, it was a big match for us. You can tell how much it meant from the [first] whistle. You could sense the stadium and the atmosphere very different already. It was a great day."

You may watch Arteta's full presser below.

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