EPL

Arsenal 'needed to play' after postponements, Arteta says

By Sports Desk September 16, 2022

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta says the club "needed to play" this weekend after back-to-back postponements.

Premier League action was called off last weekend following the death of Queen Elizabeth II, while Arsenal's Europa League game with PSV on Thursday was also postponed.

Chelsea's clash against Liverpool and Manchester United's tie with Leeds United are off this weekend but the Gunners' trip across London to Brentford is going ahead.

With the added complication of the World Cup in Qatar later this year, Arteta is relieved Sunday's game will be played and hailed the nation's show of respect following the passing of the Queen.

"We needed to play. We want to play games. If you look at the schedule, after World Cup especially. We need to play games, or it is going to be tough," he said in Friday's press conference.

"It is phenomenal what the country has done. It shows the level of respect and admiration [the public have for her] and the legacy the Queen has left.

"It was very emotional, coming from a different country and culture it was pretty special."

Having suffered defeat to Manchester United last time out, Arsenal need a response and Arteta is not concerned about any lack of momentum.

"We are always available to play but there are authorities to make the right decisions. We have adapted our schedule to be as competitive as possible," he added.

Following the international break, Arsenal will have a challenging period with Premier League clashes against Tottenham and Liverpool as part of nine matches in October.

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