Having netted on each of his last three starts in the Europa League, Eddie Nketiah is hoping to continue that run tonight against Bodo/Glimt.
Our sharp-shooting striker bagged the all-important winner in our opening group game against FC Zurich, and feels he has to keep showing his goalscoring instincts to help us progress into the knockout stages, as well as help his cause to gain more Premier League starts.
Speaking to the press ahead of tonight’s meeting with the Norwegian champions, he discussed his fondness for the Europa League, stating: “It’s good to get some minutes and some starts, and obviously it’s always nice to score a goal or two as well. It’s good to test yourself against European opposition so I’m really looking forward to the game.
“I think [tonight’s game] is a good opportunity for the whole team to build on the good start we’ve had with the three points [against FC Zurich]. It’s a very important competition for all of us; we want to win and we want to qualify first as we know how important it is.
“For myself, the more games there are, the more opportunity there is to play so I’m looking forward to games in Europe and also domestically.
“The coach has got a tough decision and it’s up to me to keep working and when I get the opportunity on the field or in training, show why I should be playing. That’s what I’m going to keep trying to do.
“If I don’t play as much as I like, I’m still going to support the team, and in whatever role or minutes I get, try and do my best. I’m confident that with time and as the season goes on I’ll get opportunities and it’s up to me to take them.”
Four weeks ago out in Switzerland, we saw the first signs of a potentially fruitful partnership as Eddie and Marquinhos laid on assists for each other’s goals to hand us victory, and the striker admits he has been impressed with the quality the new arrival has brought to the squad.
“We’ve gotten to learn about each other,” Eddie said. “He’s obviously a new player, and a really talented player and a good guy off the pitch as well. We’ve got quite a good relationship off the pitch and naturally that goes onto the pitch.
“It was nice for him to get a goal and an assist and the other way round for me, so I think we can continue to build that connection and help the team.”
Tonight’s game will be the first time Emirates Stadium can be at full capacity for a European game since February 2020, when matches were played behind closed doors or in front of minuscule crowds during the pandemic, stripping away some of the allure of European games under the lights.
But now they’re back in N5, Eddie can’t wait to experience them again, especially after the wonderful sounds and scenes in the stands that provided the backdrop to our derby day win against Tottenham Hotspur, as momentum continues to build.
“The atmosphere on Saturday against Spurs was amazing and it’s great to hopefully follow that up [tonight],” added Eddie.
“Obviously it’s been a long time since we played in Europe with a full stadium so I’m really looking forward to playing out there.”
Watch the whole of Eddie’s press conference by clicking play on the video above, and read our match preview to get all the lowdown on Bodo/Glimt, as well as all the stats, quotes and team news
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