Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has said there are lot of things to be optimistic about after a fifth consecutive pre-season win, but also urged fans not to get too carried away just yet.
The Gunners thrashed Chelsea 4-0 in Florida on Saturday night, taking their goal tally across five warm-up games to 19, saving the best for the final tour match.
There is one remaining friendly to play against Sevilla back at the Emirates Stadium on 30 July, before the 2022/23 season starts for real in the Premier League on 5 August.
“As you could see there are a lot of positives to take from the [Chelsea] game. The way we played, the intensity we showed, the way we were trying to show who we are as a team,” Arteta said when reflecting on the match, via Arsenal.com.
“But at the same time, it’s just a test match. Don’t get carried away. There are still a lot of things that we have to get better at and do better.
“I think it’s good to get some momentum, finish the tour in the right way, give some enjoyment to our fans and everybody that’s been contributing to make this tour happen. Now it’s time to go back to London, to focus and keep making improvements and steps forwards.”
This summer has been a continuation of an ongoing project for Arsenal and one of the important factors has been getting the necessary new players through the door early, which cannot be said for all the teams hoping to compete for a top four place.
Deals for Fabio Vieira and Marquinhos were both done before the transfer window officially opened, while Gabriel Jesus followed only a few days after. Even the much more recent capture of Oleksandr Zinchenko has been completed in more than enough time for him to get a couple of pre-season games in his legs with his new teammates.
“It’s ideal for any coach that you ask, the earlier you get the players, the better. Because you need to get them in the cohesion of the team, understanding each other, relaxed and comfortable socially around the team,” Arteta explained.
“The fact that [Jesus] has been with us for a few weeks makes a huge difference.”
Jesus in particular has been a revelation since arriving, scoring four times in pre-season. There were concerns when the Brazilian was withdrawn against Chelsea, but Arteta has clarified things.
“He got a knock in the first half in his quad I think it was and it wasn't very comfortable to continue and obviously we didn't take any risks,” the boss said.