What happened after Brentford’s opening day victory over Arsenal last season really stung Mikel Arteta, Arsenal’s Amazon Prime documentary has revealed.
But the Gunners boss used a tweet from Bees striker Ivan Toney to fire his players up for the reverse fixture.
Thomas Frank’s side bossed the Gunners in their first ever Premier League game following their promotion from the Championship, beating a dejected-looking Arsenal side 2-0.
After the match, Toney took to Twitter to poke some fun at his side’s London rivals.
“Nice kick about with the boys. @BrentfordFC,” the star wrote, tongue in cheek.
And it seems that the Bees hero’s post stung Arteta for the rest of the season, with him using it to motivate his side when the two sides met at the Emirates Stadium.
As revealed in the upcoming episodes of the Amazon series, Arteta is seen putting a picture of Toney’s tweet up on a screen as his team prepared for the tie against the side that injected first day embarrassment on them.
“Before I go, because it’s still in my stomach and I have managed to keep it for four months, five months, six months,” Arteta said, pointing to the tweet on the screen.
“This is Toney after the game when we played at Brentford. You know what he did? You know his tweet? Nice kick about with the boys this afternoon.
“So today they play in our house, guys there is only one team on that fing pitch – and it’s us! Only one team, it’s like they don’t play football. We take that fing ball, we take the game, we go for it and let’s f***ing win this game!’
Arteta’s tactic seemed to work, too.
Seeking vengeance, his team beat the Bees 2-1 at home, with Emile Smith Rowe and Bukayo Saka netting their goals.
And the Gunners’ players’ reactions following the victory shows Arteta’s message sunk in, too.
Copying Toney’s tweet word for word aside from using Arsenal’s name and adding a kissing face emoji at the end, then-Arsenal striker Alexandre Lacazette said: “Nice kick about with the boys. @Arsenal.”
Nice kick about with the boys. ⚽️@Arsenal 😘
— Alexandre Lacazette (@LacazetteAlex) February 19, 2022