Mikel Arteta, Manager of Arsenal, applauds the fans after the draw in the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Arsenal FC at Anfield on December 23, 2023.
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta.

Arteta: Liverpool draw ‘most intense, hectic game’ Arsenal boss has seen

Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Liverpool on Saturday was “one of the most intense, hectic games” that manager Mikel Arteta has been involved in. 

The Gunners got off to the perfect start when Gabriel Magalhaes headed home from a Martin Odegaard free-kick just three minutes into the game.

Mo Salah hit back before the first half was out, though, smashing the ball past David Raya following a lovely ball over the top from Trent Alexander-Arnold.

“A big test and we absolutely came through it,” Arteta told Sky Sports. “The boys were incredible. One of the most intense, hectic games I have witnessed in 20 years in this league which says a lot.

“It was an unbelievable game of football with two teams that raised the bar to another level, both sides wanted to win and played as such. In the last 15-20 minutes our team really wanted to win but we didn’t find the right quality moment in the final third to achieve it.”

When asked why it was such an intense contest, Arteta responded: “Liverpool are the best team in the world at making a game like that.

“One minute we have a chance with Jesus, and the five seconds later the ball is in your own box. Turning around and not living the game every second can cost you. The corner to the five on one in the second half proved that.”

Liverpool were denied a penalty in the first half when Martin Odegaard handled the ball in the box after losing his footing, but Arteta did not give his view on the decision.

“There were two big decisions, I have not looked at them again yet. I was asked before but I have not seen them again,” he said.

The results leaves Arsenal on top of the Premier League table heading into Christmas Day, while Liverpool sit just one point behind the north London outfit.

Read – Liverpool boss confused by ‘weird’ Arsenal handball decision

See Also – The teams on top on Christmas Day that didn’t win Premier League

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