Gunners winner took Arteta by surprise

Arsenal 1-0 West Ham United – Reaction

MIKEL ARTETA confessed he had already accepted that Alexandre Lacazette’s winning goal would be ruled out before VAR intervened.

The controversial goal, twelve minutes from time, largely got the Gunners out of jail after a lacklustre performance against relegation-haunted West Ham United.

“When the goal was disallowed I thought, okay that’s fine,” the Gunners chief explained.

“Then my staff came from the bench and said ‘it’s a goal’. But then it try for two or three minutes. I don’t know how long, then I wasn’t very positive about the outcome. I am very pleased with the VAR tonight.”

Arteta recognised it wasn’t a vintage Arsenal display: “We had moments, obviously in the first half when teams are so compact and defended with that deep block and we gave a lot of simple balls away in dangerous areas where we allowed the opposition to generate transition moments which they are good at.

“After that, it was a free-kick and after that, it was a corner, so we struggled a little bit to find our flow and when we did it a little bit in the final third, we lacked the final pass, the right pass and as well the desire to be more aggressive and finish more actions in the final third.”

Nevertheless, the Gunners unbeaten Premier League sequence is now standing at nine matches, proof of the progress the North Londoners are making under the Spaniard. But he was mindful there was plenty still to do if Arsenal are to become genuine top-four contenders again:: “It’s only turning a corner in terms of results.

“A little bit in terms of the things I want to see from my team, but they were telling me now that ‘I’ve turned the ship around’, that ship still has to turn a few times more to see what we want to see.

“It’s part of the process, it doesn’t happen overnight, we are positive that we can keep going on this from the eight or nine weeks that we’ve been here. It will be down to the performances that we put in and it will be related to the results.

Look out for Michel Arteta’s post-West Ham press conference – in full – courtesy of The Press Bureau – shortly…

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Brian Jeeves

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