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Main » 2013 » April » 29 » Arteta focused on European qualification

Arteta focused on European qualification

champions league
Mikel Arteta has urged Arsenal to be ruthless as they battle to secure UEFA Champions League qualification.
A 1-1 draw with champions Manchester United on Sunday left Arsenal in fourth place, two points clear of Tottenham who have a game in hand.

And Arteta believes Arsenal can have a positive end to a largely frustrating season by beating relegated QPR on Saturday and extending their unbeaten league run to eight games.

"It will be about who is the most clinical at the right moments," Arteta said.

"When it gets to the last games, the teams who are the most clinical win the games - we have seen that over the last few weeks.

"It will be a difficult battle for everyone."

The Spanish midfielder has emphasised the importance of staying focused and feels Arsenal will have to prepare themselves for a battle to take one of the remaining Champions League places.

"You want to do well when you go for challenges or make a mistake," he added.

"There is pressure on us like there is for the other teams. Every team in the Premier League is playing for something, relegation or Europe. It will be interesting.

"I believe in our players but we have to show we can do it. It is easy saying we have a better chance, but it is up to us to do it on the pitch.

"Every game is difficult and anything can happen. We have to play for that."

Before Sunday's fixture with United Arsenal gave the champions a guard of honour, with former striker Robin Van Persie enduring a chorus of boos. 

But Arteta feels that Arsenal can use United's achievement as inspiration to place themselves back among the leaders for the title and is desperate to earn honours with the club.

"They won the league with four games to go, so deserved the clapping," the 31 year-old said.

"When someone does the job you have to congratulate them. This is the respectful thing to do.

"It would be great [for it to happen to Arsenal]. You want to be on that situation, walk on the pitch and the other team's showing respect because you are the winners.

"Hopefully, along with our young players, we will have the chance to do it."
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