Martin Odegaard hit back at critics who claimed Arsenal over celebrated their victory over 10-man Liverpool – insisting they will remain “humble” throughout their Premier League title challenge.
The Gunners moved to within two points of Jurgen Klopp’s leaders following a 3-1 win over 10-man Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium.
Bukayo Saka opened the scoring for Arsenal before Gabriel Magalhaes’ unfortunate own goal levelled for the visitors on the stroke of half-time.
A mix-up between Alisson Becker and Virgil van Dijk allowed Gabriel Martinelli to restore Arsenal’s lead in the second half, with substitute Leandro Trossard making sure of the points in stoppage time after Ibrahima Konate had been sent off.
By all means enjoy it, but enjoy it by being disciplined! #ARSLIV
— Jamie Carragher (@Carra23) February 4, 2024
Odegaard then led the celebrations, taking the camera off the club’s photographer to snap the jubilant reactions to a result that put Mikel Arteta’s men right back into title contention.
Sky Sports pundit and former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher was unhappy with what he saw.
“Just get down the tunnel. You’ve won a game, three points, you’ve been brilliant. Back in the title race, get down the tunnel. I’m serious, honestly,” he said – before later adding on X, formerly known as Twitter: “By all means enjoy it, but enjoy it by being disciplined!”
Carragher also changed his X profile picture to one of Odegaard using the camera, but the Arsenal captain was not about to apologise for his post-match celebrations.
Asked if it is possible to over celebrate after such a big win, the Norway international replied: “No, I think everyone who loves football, who understands football, they know how much it means to win this game.
New skill unlocked pic.twitter.com/NMR1teOU9V
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) February 4, 2024
“And if you’re not allowed to celebrate when you win a game, when are you allowed to celebrate? We’re happy with the win and we’ll stay humble.
“We keep working hard and we prepare for the next one but of course you have to be happy when you win.
“It was a massive game. As you say it could have been eight points (if we’d lost) and it would look a lot more difficult then but we showed up, the fans were unbelievable.
“I think we all did this together. You see the club, how together we are, all the players, staff, supporters, everything. So yeah, brilliant to see.”
For Liverpool, it was just a second league defeat of the campaign and Klopp admits overcoming a loss can prove more of a challenge when it does not happen often.
“We didn’t lose recently an awful lot of football games, we know that,” he said.
“That means dealing with defeats is a challenge – for humankind actually. Nobody here expects, in our dressing room at least, that we just will fly over Burnley or whatever.
“They fight for their targets, it’s a really talented group, unlucky in moments and stuff like this. But it’s a home game and we can turn things around, meaning the first step, and then we will see.
“(After Sunday) Nobody celebrates the champion and nobody is relegated as far as I know, so we have all the chance to create our own destiny. Let’s see what happens.”