Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta admits he will be disappointed if his side finishes fifth

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Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has stated that his club will “go for it” in order to qualify for the Champions League. The Gunners, who are currently tied for fourth place with Tottenham Hotspur, go to St. James’ Park tonight to face Newcastle United in their last league game of the season.

Spurs kept the pressure on Arsenal with a 1-0 win over Burnley on Saturday, reducing the distance between them and the Gunners to just a point following their remarkable 3-0 derby victory last week. With a win over the Magpies, Arteta’s side would return to the fourth position ahead of their season finale against relegation-threatened Everton.

When asked if placing sixth was something to celebrate at the pre-match press conference on Sunday, the Spaniard responded “No.”

We want to compete in the Champions League, and that is it. We’ve come a long way. Arteta went on: Now that it’s in our hands, we want to take advantage of it, and the excitement and opportunity are there, and we’ll want to go for it.”

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Arsenal hasn’t finished in the top four in the Premier League since finishing second in the 2015-16 season. In their last two seasons, they have finished seventh. The Gunners cannot afford any more slip-ups with only two games remaining. Arteta has urged his players to build on their current momentum. He added:

“It’s not about pressure; it’s about enthusiasm, and that’s what we’ve been building over the last few months.” As I have stated, the goal is to finish in the top four. It’s now in our hands, and we intend to deliver.

Arsenal is playing a crucial game, but Arteta is having defensive troubles. Rob Holding has been suspended for the match following his red card against Spurs last week. Meanwhile, Ben White and Gabriel, the team’s first-choice center-backs, are also injured.

Both were absent from Arsenal’s Sunday training session. Arteta may be forced to utilize a makeshift backline with Takehiro Tomiyasu and Granit Xhaka if both are unable to play tonight. For the record, Kierney is out of play due to knee surgery, but Nuno Tavares is available and should continue to fill in for him in the left-back position.

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