Freddie Ljungberg will remain part of Arsenal’s coaching set-up after Mikel Arteta confirmed he had held positive talks with the Swede after the 0-0 draw at Everton.
Raul Sanllehi and Edu were both adamant that there would be room for Freddie following Arteta’s arrival but that didn’t quell suggestions that the 42-year-old could look for opportunities elsewhere having tasted life as a head coach in the aftermath of Unai Emery’s sacking.
Facing the media ahead of his first game in charge of the Gunners, Arteta was asked about his conversation with Ljungberg and they’d come to a resolution over his future.
“I spoke to Freddie after the game,” confirmed Arteta. “I told him my ideas about the people I want to bring to form my coaching staff, the roles and responsibilities of each of them and I wanted to know what he was feeling.
“I wanted to know what he had in mind and what his expectations were. We talked and we made a decision that the best thing was for him to carry on with us.
“I think he can be very valuable, he knows the players, he knows the situation, he knows the history and where we’re coming from.
“As well, his knowledge of the game is going to help us get better.”
He added: “I knew him a little bit obviously, and we will start a new chapter now with new ideas, new ways of doing things. I got a really good impression. He’s ready to help. He was very positive.”
Arteta was also asked about Ljungberg’s suggestion that he wouldn’t have picked Mesut Ozil for the last game, even if he’d been fit. Substituted against Manchester City the former Germany international kicked his gloves to the floor in a fit of anger.
“It’s a question for him [Freddie], I just wanted him to make a decision to pick the best possible lineup to win against Everton.
“My job started straight after the game, I have to pick the players up, first of all mentally. I need to put them in the work frame [of mind] that I want.
“For me, they have a clean sheet. I told them.You’re not going to be judged on things you’ve done in the past, whether they are negative or positive.
“This is evolving every day and I’m expecting you to perform and be in the right mindset every single day for me. If you do that, you’ll have a chance to play. If you don’t, you won’t.”
It’s great news that Freddie is sticking around. Given all the change that has happened a bit of continuity at London Colney will no doubt be welcome, especially for the youngsters in whom the Swede put so much trust last weekend.