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Arteta stunned by Saliba strike

Mikel Arteta admitted that he was surprised by William Saliba’s fine goal that sealed a superb 3-0 win against Bournemouth to make it nine points from nine at the start of the Premier League season.

The Frenchman curled an excellent finish into the top corner on 51 minutes to put us three goals ahead and kill off any hopes of a Cherries comeback, sparking wild celebrations and a new chant from our supporters in a packed-out away end.

And the boss is continuing to be impressed with the youngster, who goes from strength to strength as the weeks go on.

When asked post-match if he thought his centre-back was capable of a strike of that quality, Arteta said: “To be fair, no. That is individual talent and a moment of quality that he showed today but I am really pleased with his performance.

“What he is doing at 21 years old is rare. He remains really humble. He wants to learn, he wants to train every day and he is really demanding of himself and he is giving a lot to the team.

“It is very important to get the clean sheet as well. Everybody is scoring goals and that's good.”

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Saliba scores in style against Bournemouth

Saliba put the icing on the cake following Martin Odegaard’s early brace, and Arteta was delighted that his aim of seeing us control proceedings throughout came to fruition, even when expecting a reaction following half-time.

“We are really happy to come here and win 3-0,” he added. “We really were dominant and convincing, right from the off. We wanted to grab the game and be a threat and obviously the two goals that we scored gave us confidence.

“When you are ahead obviously it changes the game and put it in a position where we are much more confident after that, and then the third goal just killed it. We expected a very different reaction in the second half from Bournemouth which they did, they started to put the ball with long throws in our box much more often and we struggled a little bit to control the game.”

The players wore black armbands in tribute to our head groundsman, Steve Braddock who passed away this week, and Arteta was pleased that the performance and result meant there was a fitting tribute to an incredible servant to the club.

“I would like to dedicate this victory to him and his family. It was an honour to meet him, to meet the person, how much he was loved at the football club. The legacy that he is leaving is just tremendous and hopefully, he can rest in peace and his family can all get through this.”

 

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