Arsenal boss Unai Emery on pre-match Blackpool protests delaying team coach, Aaron Ramsey and Denis Suarez
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Read the full transcript of Unai Emery’s post-match press conference hee at Bloomfield Road after Arsenal beat Blackpool 3-0 in the FA Cup third round.
On the protester at the team hotel - was it a distraction?
There was no change for us. We know there are some problems here with the club, the supporters and the team. We have respect for them – the supporters, the club, the team – and we prepared for the match with respect also for this competition.
I think the 90 minutes was competitive and we watch a big match for them and for us.
Was the protester’s presence worrying for you?
I cannot say a lot about this situation. Only we have respect and then other thing is to have a solution for the problem.
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I am very proud of the players today, of our work. Firstly because of our adaption to the circumstance and the atmosphere here.
I think every player had very big commitment, big concentration for the 90 minutes, being competitive. We imposed our positioning and also sometimes our quality.
But it was very important first to adapt to the game plan, to the long balls, to the second actions and we did that. I am very happy for the way the players worked.
On Joe Willock
We need players with commitment. We need players who are prepared for when the team needs them and they can step up.
Opportunities are coming in matches like today. We mixed experienced players in the squad with some young players like Joe, Eddie
(Nketiah), Ainsley (Maitland-Niles).
It was a good combination. They can show us they are progressing with the team and showed their passion. They work hard and concentrate for
when we need help like today.
I’m very happy with Willock, also with Eddie because Eddie had three good chances to score but the most important thing was he created these chances and Willock scored, I think it’s good for them and us.
On Koscielny’s injury
I hope it is not a lot. We have one week to rest before the next match. I hope he will be OK.
Before the match he felt some pain in his back and we decided he should not play.
On how close a deal is for Denis Suarez
I don’t know. I think the club is working for the possibility to take some players who can help us during these next four months. Maybe the transfer
market can help us with a centre-back, but it is not easy because also Mavropanos is also coming back after injury.
Also a winger, right or left, one player can help us in this position. But we will only do this if he can bring us big quality.
Suarez - worked with him before. More of a winger?
He was playing in his career, and with me also, as a right or left winger.”
On Ramsey - Do you want him to stay?
For me the best from Aaron Ramsey is this commitment today, this performance helping us. that for me is the most important.
I am proud of my players and also in this situation how they played today and how they worked together.
But his contract situation hasn’t changed?
I am thinking and preparing for each match. Today I can say the mentality every player showed today we should be proud of them.
On the other situation, I don’t know.