Sokratis was moaning about playing right-back in Arsenal win over Portsmouth, admits Mikel Arteta

first_img Metro Sport ReporterTuesday 3 Mar 2020 7:39 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link3.6kShares Sokratis Papastathopoulos scored in Arsenal’s win over Portsmouth on Monday (Picture: Getty Images)Sokratis Papastathopoulos helped book Arsenal’s place in the FA Cup quarter-finals on Monday night, but he was also whinging about having to play right-back in the 2-0 win over Portsmouth.The Greek defender was filling in on the right of defence with Hector Bellerin rested for the cup tie and the likes of Cedric Soares and Calum Chambers out injured.The 31-year-old made the most of it, scoring an impressive opener, his third goal of the season, before Eddie Nketiah doubled the Gunners’ lead.It was a good performance from Sokratis as Arsenal bounced back to winning ways after their disappointing Europa League exit to Olympiakos, but Mikel Arteta admits he was playing on the right against his will.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENT‘He moans a little bit because it is not his position,’ Arteta said in the post-match press conference.‘But for certain games, he is very helpful and he always has the right attitude and he has the qualities to play there in essential moments when we need him.’ More accustomed to playing in the middle of defence, Sokratis was slightly uncomfortable with some aspects of playing at full-back, which led to his manager shouting a lot of instructions at him from the sidelines.The Spaniard was more than happy to do this, and felt the defender took to the task well, with a little help.‘Yes, sometimes you need to interpret that when we have the ball it is a little bit different for him to use the spaces like he should do in relation to what the opponents are doing, but in general I think he is doing really well,’ said Arteta.Arsenal now await the FA Cup quarter-final draw which will be made on Wednesday evening, before they host West Ham in the Premier League on Saturday.MORE: Lee Dixon claims Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’ are NOT the best team in Premier League historyMORE: Lucas Torreira provides injury update after being stretchered off against PortsmouthAFollow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page. Sokratis was moaning about playing right-back in Arsenal win over Portsmouth, admits Mikel Arteta A striker’s finish!Sokratis’ crisp volley has Arsenal ahead at Fratton Park 🍌— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) March 2, 2020center_img Advertisement Comment Advertisementlast_img read more

Diakali heading to Aintree

first_imgWillie Mullins will rely on Diakali in the Doom Bar Aintree Hurdle on Thursday. Nigel Twiston-Davies’ stable star was badly hampered by the fatal fall of Our Conor at Cheltenham, but the way he flashed home up the hill suggested he would have played a part in the finish. The New One was narrowly beaten by Zarkandar as a novice in this race last season and Twiston-Davies and his jockey-son, Sam, will be hoping for a bit more fortune. Taking him on is former champion hurdler Rock On Ruby after connections decided to put a chasing career on the back-burner following an error-strewn round of jumping in the Arkle. Another reverting to the smaller obstacles is Nicky Henderson’s Grandouet. With Zarkandar likely to take up on option on Saturday in the Silver Cross Stayers’ Hurdle, Paul Nicholls instead relies upon Irish Saint and Ptit Zig in the two-and-a-half-mile contest. Alan King’s Grumeti, winner of the Grade One four-year-old juvenile hurdle at the meeting two years ago, completes the field of seven. The grey ran such a game race when finishing fourth under top weight in the County Hurdle when last seen at the Cheltenham Festival and takes on a classy field in Liverpool. The New One will attempt to atone for an unlucky run in the Champion Hurdle by aiming to go one better than 12 months ago. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more