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By Martin Graham | 3rd Mar 2023
Despite a dominant night that saw Arsenal score four goals, keep a clean sheet and claim three precious points, Mikel Arteta believes there is still more to come from his side after beating Everton 4-0.
Goals from Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard and a brace from Gabriel Martinelli saw Arsenal claim a comfortable win to move five points clear at the top, but the game had been a tight-affair up until Bukayo Saka broke the deadlock five minutes before the break.
Arteta feels that early period shows that there is still work to do, but was delighted to see his team overcome that difficult start to blow their opponents away, especially in the second half.
Arteta wants more from his team
Speaking after the game, Arteta was pleased with his side’s performance but insisted that they could raise the standard even higher.
“I’m really happy with the performance and the win,” he said post-match “It wasn’t perfect because for the first 20-25 minutes, we had some difficulties and we generated some frustrations. We allowed some opportunities for our opponent to run without creating much. After that, we picked up the game and understood better what we had to do.
“We were more efficient, much better in the counter-press and regaining the ball straight away and I think once we scored the goals in crucial moments, the team was full of confidence and played a great game in the second half.”
Having seen the goals now come in good numbers over the past few weeks, Arteta is thrilled to see the creativity in his side upfront, which was necessary to break down a stubborn Toffees defence, and help the Gunners take their tally to nine goals from their last three games, which all ended in moral-boosting wins.
On the cohesion up front, he said: “That’s something we’re going to need, to create a lot of opportunities against this block is really difficult because when we find openings, we have to be clinical and ruthless. I think the way Bukayo scored the first goal, it was top.
“It’s obviously really important to bounce back the way we’ve done it. Winning in a convincing way with very strong performances – two away victories and the home victory today.”
Bukayo Saka was also pleased to get on the scoresheet, with a strike that saw him hit double digits in the Premier League.
He said: “I’m really happy. We went there a few weeks ago and we lost, so we knew going into the game how difficult it would be. To score four goals and play like that, we can be so proud of ourselves.
“I think [his goal] was my first chance of the game. It was the breakthrough. After setting I just had to focus on my touches, turning my body and myself, [going on] my right foot and finishing. I looked up and it was in the net, so I was happy.
“I’m happy [to hit double figures], it’s something I always set myself to try and improve. I’m hungry to achieve more.”