Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger was happy to come away from the Britannia Stadium with a point after watching his side draw a blank in Staffordshire.
Although the Gunners couldn’t create much going forward, they were a lot more solid at the back, especially compared to the 3-3 draw against Liverpool last Wednesday.
That pleased Wenger, despite not coming away with a win, because Arsenal have typically struggled against the Potteries, so to gain a point where rivals have not is how Wenger came away feeling after playing out a 0-0 with Mark Hughes’ side.
Speaking to the media, as reported by the club’s official website, Wenger admitted it was a battle.
We did well to battle. They made the game physical, they were up for it, the players were up for it and they were up for a direct game.
We lacked a bit of creativity to force a way through and on top of that we missed good chances.
We wanted to win the game but looking at our history here it is a positive result. Looking at the results of the other teams that played at the top, it is a positive result. But overall, we missed two points today.
Petr Cech had to be at his best to keep out some great efforts at his goal and up the other end, Olivier Giroud and Joel Campbell had Arsenal’s best goalscoring chances.
Wenger pointed towards a certain characteristic which enabled them to not only mentally overcome memories from previous encounters at Stoke, but being without 16 assists for the season man Mesut Ozil – their most creative influence.
I think Stoke played very well today in the air but we had clear-cut chances with Giroud and Campbell.
Maybe there was a dangerous situation when Theo Walcott could have got a penalty or a free-kick on the edge of the box.
I must say I cannot fault my team for their attitude, it was spot on the way my team responded to the challenge.
Wenger also had some choice words for the Stoke fans who, unsurprisingly because it happens all the time, booed Aaron Ramsey – bizarrely nonetheless.
I don’t listen too much. I focus on the game. I shut my ears and that is the best way to deal with it.Maybe when they go home and watch it on television, they will be less proud.