Post-match reaction from Arsene Wenger and Steve McClaren after Laurent Koscielny scored the only goal in Arsenal’s 1-0 home win over Newcastle United on Saturday (2 January).
Arsene Wenger, Arsenal manager (on the game and his team’s mental strength)
“It was a difficult game against a good Newcastle side. Our legs were a bit heavy today, I must say, and overall we needed to…we were tested against a team with a lot of technical quality and our fluency was not there, our movement was not there, and from then on, of course, it was: ‘let’s stick together’ and try to win the game how you can. And that’s what we did, basically. It was more (that) the mental aspect of our team was tested today and our defensive solidity (rather) than our quality going forward.”
Steve McClaren, Newcastle United manager (on the result)
“I’m scratching my head as to how we didn’t get nothing (anything) from that game. Not many teams will come here and do that to Arsenal, what we did today, without going away with something. I thought after the first 10 minutes we controlled it, defended well, were aggressive, kept possession of the ball and created chances. But it’s about putting the ball in the back of the net and that’s why (despite it being) a bad day for Arsenal, they win it and we don’t.”