Potter: Arteta and Arsenal are ‘making progress’


Brighton travel to the Emirates on Sunday to face Mikel Arteta and Arsenal, as the Gunners look to do the league double over the Seagulls for the first time since the 1980-81 season.

Graham Potter’s side are on the back of a 3-2 win against champions Manchester City and are looking to build on this in Sunday’s match against the Gunners.

Meanwhile, Arsenal sit in ninth and are relying on fixtures going their way if they are to finish in seventh to qualify for the European Conference League.

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In an overall disappointing campaign for Arsenal, there have been some bright sparks as Emile Smith Rowe, 20, and Bukayo Saka, 19, have excelled to carry the team on their back at times.

Despite the north London club’s dismal season, Brighton boss Potter has praised Arteta for the job he is doing: “You could see that they’re disappointed because a club of that size is always competing in the top competitions, but sometimes in football that happens, but they have performed really well in games and should have won and scored more.

“They have missed some opportunities. They can still attack you from any area on the pitch, they’re making progress as a team, Mikel is making progress there.

“They’re going to be strong, fighting for the points to get into Europe. From being written off a few months ago, they’re still in the fight and that’s a credit to them. They’re going to be a tough team.”

Arsenal defeated Brighton 1-0 earlier this season after Alexandre Lacazette’s goal, but they do not have the best record against the Seagulls since their promotion to the Premier League in 2017.

In their seven meetings since, the Gunners have won two, drawn two and lost three.

A point would be enough for Brighton to beat their PL record points total of 41, which was set last year in Potter’s first season in charge.

Arsenal have won four league matches in a row, including a 1-0 win away to Chelsea, so they will be full of confidence and momentum going into Sunday’s match, something that has been a rarity for the Gunners this season.

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