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Mikel Arteta: Arsenal boss has no issue with Ben White and Oleksandr Zinchenko scuffle at end of Forest win

Arsenal team-mates Ben White and Oleksandr Zinchenko involved in "heated" scuffle at end of 2-1 win at Nottingham Forest; defenders had to be separated after arguing over Forest's late goal; Gunners boss Mikel Arteta: "I love it, they demand more from each other and they are not happy"

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from the Premier League match between Nottingham Forest and Arsenal

Mikel Arteta "loved" seeing Ben White and Oleksandr Zinchenko clash with each other at the end of Arsenal's 2-1 win over Nottingham Forest.

The Gunners were cruising to an easy three points at the City Ground after second-half goals from Gabriel Jesus and Bukayo Saka but endured a nervy ending when Taiwo Awoniyi capitalised on a defensive mistake to give Forest a lifeline.

They saw out the victory which closed the gap on Premier League leaders Liverpool, but celebrations were cut short when White and Zinchenko had to be separated after arguing over the goal they conceded.

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Oleksandr Zinchenko and Ben White had a heated confrontation after the final whistle of Arsenal's 2-1 win against Nottingham Forest, and Mikel Arteta reacted by saying he 'loves it'. Arteta feels it shows the passion amongst his players.

"I love it, they demand more from each other and they are not happy with the way they concede that and they are trying to resolve it," the Arsenal boss said.

"It was a bit heated, but that means it is not enough playing the way we played, the result has to be bigger.

"That's pushing each other and being not happy conceding and I have to encourage that and promote it in the right way and a respectful way.

"Sometimes after the game it's emotional and heated, but I love that the players are pushing each other and demanding excellence."

Also See:

Arsenal close in on leaders Liverpool

Bukayo Saka celebrates after doubling Arsenal's lead at Nottingham Forest
Image: Bukayo Saka celebrates doubling Arsenal's lead

The victory saw the Gunners exorcise the ghosts of last season when May's 1-0 defeat at the City Ground saw their title challenge come to an end - and Arteta was pleased to see his side put that right.

"I could feel it, they were talking about it coming to that dressing room," he said. "It really reminds you, our brains and bodies are really intelligent and coming to the same situation they know what happened and they were really active and engaged and they were talking about the game with each other.

"I thought it was really good.

"I am really happy with the performance and the result. We saw what happened last year and we wanted to put it right, we wanted to generate some momentum in the league and I thought we did that.

"The performance was very good, we completely dominated the game. We had to be patient but we always had an eye to the opponent, we didn't allow them to run."

Analysis: Arsenal show personality, patience and passion

Gabriel Jesus celebrates after giving Arsenal the lead at Nottingham Forest
Image: Gabriel Jesus celebrates opening the scoring for Arsenal

Sky Sports' Sam Blitz:

Mikel Arteta demanded his Arsenal team show their personality at Nottingham Forest - a place where many top teams have faltered.

Since Forest came up to the Premier League, they have beaten Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester United and this season's Aston Villa at the City Ground. Manchester City and Chelsea failed to win there last season too.

But amid a raucous home atmosphere, Arsenal's personality shone through. Within half an hour, they had made 111 touches in the final third compared to just one for Forest, who were pinned back and their fans were left stunned and silent.

The only issue was that, for most of the game, the important statistic was 0-0.

Then came the patience. Jesus missed two big chances at the start of the second half but his willingness to keep going, score one, then set up another, won his side the game.

Then came the passion. After full-time, with Forest nearly coming back to claim a point, Oleksandr Zinchenko was furious at Ben White - both players had to be separated amid the celebrations.

A lot has been made about what Arsenal lack. New striker, new winger, new left-back are among the cries. None are coming, so Arsenal are sticking to what they do have.

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