Unai Emery on extending winning run, starting quicker and squad balance
Photo: David Ramos

Unai Emery on extending winning run, starting quicker and squad balance

The Gunners Head Coach remained calm and collected as his side continued their impressive form.

Jordan Owusu-Adu

Arsenal’s 1-0 win over Sporting Lisbon in the Europa League on Thursday night extended their current winning streak to eleven games, just three off the clubs all-time record of 14.

London Derby only focus

However, Head Coach Unai Emery kept expectations under control as he spoke after their latest triumph in which Danny Welbeck scored the game's only goal.

“Three matches. They are a lot of matches. We are thinking only of the next one against Crystal Palace and also to enjoy each moment with our supporters. Today, they are with us, some from London, some from here and that is very important, I enjoy it.

“Sunday in history is one stadium that is very difficult for us, we know this. We are thinking of three points in Crystal Palace but it is very difficult to win there. 

“For us to continue to win is what we want, but we know we can lose at any moment.”

First half complete

The Gunners win in Lisbon moves them onto nine points in Group E, three ahead of their Portuguese rivals who they face in the next game week at the Emirates Stadium.

When asked how he would manage his squad in the second half of the group stage, Emery revealed that nothing will change.

“For us is the same idea. To take responsibility and take minutes with some different players. Because some players played in the Premier League and in the Europa League. We want to balance the minutes for the players, but only thinking of the best performance for us."

Emery also took time to ensure that everyone in his squad will be called upon as the Gunners strive to get better. “We want to continue winning and to continue improving things. Each match for us is a big opportunity and for every player to show us and to take responsibility like we want. We need every player.”

Embed from Getty Images

Slow starters again

So far this season the Gunners have noticeably lifted their performance levels in a number of games after half-time, and Thursday’s win was no different. 

When asked why this is, Emery said: “Each match there is a very big opportunity to improve things and one is this.

"But the most important is that when we were in the dressing room at half time we spoke and said ‘Ok today also, we cannot impose our game in first 45 minutes, but the second half we have the opportunity to change the result and continue in our way, thinking only of winning this match and improving things in the second half."