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18th Jun 2015

“We must challenge for the title” – JOE talks to Arsenal’s Tomas Rosicky…

Matt Stanger

Now entering his tenth season at Arsenal, Tomas Rosicky is one of the club’s most experienced players. Speaking at PUMA’s Arsenal home kit launch, he told JOE about his title ambitions and how the current squad compares to previous teams…

Is next season the year Arsenal have to mount a sustained challenge for the title?

It must be. I thought we would challenge last season but obviously the first half of the season was not good. We didn’t play well at all and it wasn’t the Arsenal style of football we were playing.

You could see from January we started to play our own way and it was all Arsenal. Now we have to show we can produce these kind of performances for the whole season and not just for half.

Is the squad focused on building on the FA Cup victory?

Every player realises we have to carry on that momentum. We don’t want to just be third and win the FA Cup. Obviously, it’s a solid season when you win the FA Cup. You could see the progress in the team after December. We picked up and got better and better.

Consistency is key for any title challenge and that is what we have to show through the whole of next season. The potential is there for this side to challenge for the title.


Does the Community Shield clash against Chelsea present a good opportunity to put down a marker ahead of the new campaign?

It could be but when you look at last season we beat Manchester City in the Community shield. However, after that it wasn’t there for us.

This game comes too early in the season to judge the two teams. Everybody will have only been in training for a few weeks and that is not enough.

Obviously, it something you want to win. There’s no doubt about it. It’s a trophy and you want to win trophies but I don’t think it will have any bearing on how both teams will go into the season.

Is this the most talented group you’ve played with during your nine years at Arsenal?

It’s definitely the strongest squad. Numbers-wise it’s the most talented squad I have played with.

Is it the best team I have played in? It’s difficult to say. The 2007/08 side was a great team as well and we were top of the Premier League until February. Three or four injuries was the reason we weren’t champions that year. But the current squad in terms of its depth is the most talented since I’ve been here.


Your Czech Republic teammate Petr Cech has been linked with a move to Arsenal this summer – what are your thoughts on that?

Petr is a very experienced guy. He’s 33 and he’s been through all the situations you can imagine. The experience is there and that is vital for a goalkeeper. That is what he can offer.

I don’t know if Arsenal really want him or not but he’s a very good goalkeeper. He’s a proven goalkeeper. He’s show it for many years and he’s still got plenty of years ahead of him.

Greece v Czech Republic - Group A: UEFA EURO 2012

Do you plan to finish your career at Arsenal?

My focus is here. I have another year left on my contract. It was a difficult time for me. It’s never easy when you are not playing at all and you end the season in the stands.

Is there a frustration? Of course there is a frustration because I think I can still help the team to be better. On the other side I have been here nine years and I have always said I love the club.

I don’t think I have to prove to anyone how I feel about Arsenal and how loyal I am to this club. Of course it’s not going well for me at the moment. It’s disappointing but I will not give up easy. I will fight.

The new PUMA Arsenal 15/16 Home Kit is Powered By Fans and available to buy from 25 June, pre-order at #ForeverArsenal