Mudryk bid; Saliba’s contract; Brighton team news

Mikel Arteta has spoken to the media ahead of Arsenal’s meeting with Brighton on Saturday evening.

The Gunners are sitting pretty at the top of the Premier League standings and kept their performance level high with an impressive 3-1 thumping of West Ham to celebrate their return to domestic action after the World Cup break.

Here’s the highlights from Arteta’s pre-match press conference.

Shakhtar have confirmed talks with Arsenal over Mudryk, so what’s going on?

“I cannot talk about players that are not Arsenal.”

How important is it to tie Saliba down to a new contract?

“We have a few of those that we are willing to extend the contract. Willy is one of them. I think he’s shown in the months that he’s been with us the quality and the personality he has to play at the level that we want. We are trying to do that because we know he can be a really important part of our plans.”

Are talks progressing well?

“I hope so. That’s more to Edu and the board to be discussing with him. What I know is that the player is really happy, the player wants to be here and that’s the main thing.”

What’s the latest?

“Everything is good so far apart from the players that we had out. Everybody has been training well.”

Is Takehiro Tomiyasu back?

“Yeah he’s getting closer and closer. He’s been training with us so he’s available.”

How much closer is Emile Smith Rowe?

“Very much. He’s made big steps in the last week or so. He took part in some training sessions lately and looked good. We’re really keen to have him back soon.”