Mikel Arteta was left ‘overwhelmed’ after his Arsenal side mounted a stunning second-half comeback to secure a 3-2 victory over Bournemouth.
An enthralling game of football saw the relegation-threatened Cherries score twice on either side of half-time to establish a shock two-goal lead.
However, goals from Thomas Partey, Ben White and a late stunner from super-sub Reiss Nelson brought the league leaders back from the dead to record a fourth consecutive win.
Arteta was in awe of his side’s second-half performance that helped re-establish a five-point lead over Manchester City at the top of the table.
“Overwhelmed, I would say – it was incredible,” Arteta said (via Arsenal.com) when asked to describe his feelings after the game.
“The way the game started, eight seconds, we concede a goal, and then we tried, but we didn’t score a goal. Then we concede from a set play, and it looks like this is not our day.
“But we had a lot of discipline, a lot of courage to continue to play. We scored a goal with Thomas [Partey], and then the energy changed straight away.
“There were a lot of players that stepped up today to a level that I’ve never seen before, especially in difficult moments. The subs made a huge impact.”
Arteta’s substitutions marked the turning point in the game, with Emile Smith Rowe, Nelson and White proving decisive in the thrilling encounter.
The Spanish manager praised the players that came off the bench for ‘taking the initiative’ amid the current injury crisis at the club.
“We always said that we need impacters to come on the pitch and change the game, and they all did it,” Arteta added.
“We have a lot of difficult situations during the game, and we still tried not to feel sorry for ourselves and take that initiative and have that willingness still to have that bite to win the game.”
The Gunners are inching closer to their first league crown in two decades, but they will now switch their attention to the Europa League first-leg knockout clash against Sporting Lisbon.
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