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Friday 24 January 2020

Arteta delighted with Arsenal attitude after Bournemouth opener

Bournemouth 1 Arsenal 1

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta speaks with Reiss Nelson at full-time. Photo: REUTERS/Eddie Keogh
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta speaks with Reiss Nelson at full-time. Photo: REUTERS/Eddie Keogh

Mikel Arteta hailed the attitude of his Arsenal players as "spot on" after they fought back to salvage a draw at Bournemouth on his managerial debut.

Arteta received a swift reminder of the sizeable job facing him in north London following Dan Gosling's first-half opener.

But Gunners captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang prevented the visitors suffering a sixth Premier League defeat of a dismal season with a deserved 63rd-minute leveller.

Former Manchester City assistant coach Arteta admits he feared what would happen should his new side fall behind at the Vitality Stadium and was pleasantly surprised by their positive response.

"I'm very pleased with some of the things I've seen in terms of attitude, character, the passion, and the fight and the spirit the team showed," said Arteta.

"(It was) spot on, probably better than I expected over 90 minutes.

"A lot of things that happened in the game we prepared, I think they understood them and they tried to take them on board and we liked the final product at the end.

"I was worried what would have happened if we conceded a goal, and we did, and I was very pleased with the character they showed, how they came in at half-time, their faces, their reactions, how much they wanted it.

"Because normally when they are in this process and you concede a goal, belief goes down and a lot of things that have happened in the past can come back.

"And it didn't happen, it happened completely the opposite side and that's a real positive to take on board."

Arsenal dominated possession on the rain-soaked south coast, without carving out many clear chances.

Both sides scored with their first attempts on target.

Gosling poked home Jack Stacey's 35th-minute cross before Aubameyang swept in his 14th goal of the campaign following Reiss Nelson's tame deflected shot.

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