Mikel Arteta hails Arsenal 'fight, spirit and commitment' after Liverpool stalemate

Boss pleased with Gunners' mentality, but has battling draw come at too high a cost with Tottenham game on the horizon?

Mikel Arteta declared himself 'really proud' of his Arsenal side after they held Liverpool to a goalless draw at Anfield with just ten men for the majority of the contest.

Arsenal travelled north for the first leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final and were dealt a blow in the 19th minute when Granit Xhaka saw red for a high tackle

However, despite the Reds throwing everything at the Gunners' goal, they managed to hold out and become the first team to stop Liverpool from scoring at Anfield this season.

Understandably, Arteta was delighted, saying: "I am really proud of the what the boys did today, in a difficult stadium against a great opponent and playing 70 minutes with 10 men.

"It was about the fight, the spirit and commitment and quality to play the game.

"When you come to a stadium like this you have to pick players who are happy to go to war because you are going to have to fight, you are going to have difficult moments to suffer.

"You are willing to accept you are not going to play the game you want.

"When you play with that spirit and fight and brotherhood around the team you get rewarded and I think that is what happened."

The result has come with a potentially high cost, though.

Xhaka will now be suspended for the North London derby against Tottenham this weekend, while Cedric Soares and Bukayo Saka also limped off injured.

Arsenal already have four players at the African Cup of Nations and a further four out with Covid-19, meaning they could be missing as many as 11 players for the trip to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Asked how the weekend's derby clash would be affected, Arteta replied: "I don't know.

"It is a possibility in every game, from our side, from the opponents' side, because of the amount of issues everyone is having and because it is happening every week.

"We try to prepare games thinking we are going to play. If something happens along the way, it is what it is."

READ MORE: January 2022 Premier League transfer window ins, outs and latest signings

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