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Liverpool identify Mikel Arteta’s key quality to make Arsenal European dreams come true

Liverpool assistant manager, Pep Lijnders has praised Mikel Arteta’s approach to cup football ahead of the Gunners’ second trip to Anfield in four days in the Carabao Cup.

Arsenal took the lead in their Premier League clash with Jurgen Klopp’s side on Monday through Alexandre Lacazette but went on to lose the game 3-1 with goals from Sadio Mane, Andrew Robertson and Diogo Jota.

Since taking charge in north London, Arteta has now faced Liverpool three times, and beating them on his first two attempts, led to public admiration from Klopp.

One of these wins came in the Community Shield, which counts towards the Spaniard’s current unbeaten record in domestic cup football, which Lijnders was quick to highlight as a further reason to acknowledge the work that is being done at the Emirates.

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“We go from Premier League to League Cup, so it’s a final. Mikel won his last seven games in domestic cup[s] so it’s a completely different contest we are going to play [in] this game. It’s a proper win or lose,” he said ahead of the game.

“What Mikel has told at Arsenal, and what all good teams in Europe and the Premier League have is a clear identity. [Despite] changing players, it stays the same.

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“They will try to improve for sure but that’s the same for us despite it’s only two days in between. The main thing is to recover well [and] regain freshness. Some had a day off yesterday to regain freshness mentally, emotionally and others will really prepare [for] this game.”

On that domestic cup run, which began with a 1-0 win over Leeds United, Arsenal’s most impressive performances came in the FA Cup semi-final and final, when they beat Manchester City and Chelsea.

Both games laid the foundations for a more offensive use of the 3-4-3 adopted by Arteta beforehand as patterns of play from the…