Confidence means everything in football. It does in all sports, but there appears to be an even greater emphasis on self-belief in this beloved game of kick the round thing in the net.
What we can deduce from Saturday is that Arsenal have rediscovered their own. There are a select few coaches in world football who can instill confidence into a team despite points and goals drying up. That level of man-management comes from experience. Players will trust those who’ve seen it all.
This group clearly have faith in their manager. However, try as he might, Arteta can back his players to the hills and give them all the tools they need to succeed, but nothing works better than winning games. So simple, yet so complicated at the same time.
Now that they’ve got that winning feeling, the famed handbrake has been taken off. Arsenal are playing with a freedom of expression that would’ve been impossible to exhibit but two weeks ago.
Even Saka, the best player at the club over the last 12 months, has never looked so majestic. When he receives the ball, he will beat his man. Nobody can touch him. Having played without fear before, he now doesn’t even know what the word means.
This is evident throughout the team. Long may it continue.