Martin Odegaard insists Arsenal are not crumbling under the pressure of Champions League fight

·2-min read
Martin Odegaard insists Arsenal are not crumbling under the pressure of Champions League fight

Martin Odegaard insists Arsenal are not feeling the pressure in the race for Champions League qualification.

Arsenal are fourth in the Premier League, but their lead over Tottenham was cut to one point on Thursday night and their north London rivals can go above them if they beat Burnley on Sunday.

Odegaard is focusing on beating Newcastle on Monday and Everton on the final day of the season, as that will guarantee Arsenal qualify for Europe’s premier club competition.

“We’ve got having everything in our own hands — win the last two games, that’s it for us,” said Odegaard. “That is the only focus now. We don’t feel the pressure. We are going to go to Newcastle and play a good game, and try to win.”

Arsenal had to play nearly 60 minutes of the game last night with 10 men, after Rob Holding was sent off for two yellow cards in the space of seven minutes following two altercations with Son.

Before that, Spurs had taken the lead from the penalty spot, after Cedric had brought down the South Korea international — and Arteta was not happy with the performance of the officials.

The Arsenal boss said: “I have two options. I can lie to you, or I can be suspended, and I really want to be on the touchline against Newcastle. It’s a shame because such a beautiful game was destroyed.”

Odegaard also remained tight-lipped on the officiating, but said: “There were a lot of moments that affected the game. We didn’t have any luck in those situations today. I prefer not to say too much. It’s done now and we have to look forward.”

Holding will be suspended for Monday’s game at Newcastle — and that could leave Arsenal short on options at centre-back.

Gabriel limped off with 15 minutes to go last night, while Ben White was an unused substitute after returning to the squad following a hamstring injury.

“I don’t know what happened to Gabi, we will see in the next days,” said Odegaard. “We have a lot of good players that can step in. It’s not an issue. We will be ready for the game.”

Arsenal were due to assess Gabriel on Friday, with Arteta describing the problem as muscular when quizzed on it last night.

If he is out, Arteta will hope White can go straight back into the team, while they also have Takehiro Tomiyasu as an option after he filled in there last night.

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