Arteta confirms important match is important

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18 months into a very weird managerial tenure, Mikel Arteta is within touching distance of returning Arsenal to the Champions League.

Get one over Villarreal tomorrow, spank Manchester United in Gdansk on 26 May and it’s happy days at the Emirates.

He can spend the summer drinking margaritas on the beach (if he can get to one), a magic UEFA money tree will flourish at London Colney (next to the ones that Hector has planted) and we can all look forward to humming Zadok the Priest while Bayern Munich produce a masterclass at the carpet in late September.

Fail to win the Europa League and we’ll have plumbed new depths of mediocrity under the Kroenke regime, our summer transfer plans will involve, at best, magic beans and Project ‘Trust the Process’ will be in tatters.

It goes without saying that it’s an important month/game/competition for the club. But just to be sure, Arteta was asked just ‘how big’ it is in his pre-game press conference. Repeatedly.

“It’s a massive game for everybody but in particular for the club because we are here representing a football club and our fans,” he said with the kind of blandness the question deserved.

“What we want to do is to do it in the best way by winning trophies. If we win tomorrow, we will be much closer to getting another trophy. This is the only aim and the purpose of us being here.”

Pressed on whether the match is the biggest game of his managerial career – a question, we swear he’s asked weekly – he played another straight bat.

“Well, it’s a big moment again,” he said. “Not for me, but for the club and for everything that has happened in the last two years and the last months.

“All the instability that we’ve been living with for many different reasons. So I think it will be really important and a big step forward if we are able to be in that final and have the opportunity to win that trophy.”

Ignoring the fact we spent 48 hours riding high in the European Super League, he was also asked if Arsenal’s five-year absence from Europe’s top table was acceptable.

“It’s a reality. It’s not what we want, obviously, but there are a lot of things that have happened in that period, for many reasons.

“One is because the level is being raised to a level that is unprecedented in this league and we are not the only club that has been out of that.

“But obviously, we’re not going to accept that situation and we want to change it straight away. This season, we still have the opportunity to do that.”

We do indeed. Win tomorrow and Arteta will get to face the same questions very soon. Lose…and he’ll probably still be asked the same questions.

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cranky colin

Pick your best team mate.
And move on.

goongot

Man talks too much. Would totally love next manager to be considerate with his interactions. I so miss you le prof, even during his worst tenure, he always was an measured intelligent talker.

Qwaliteee

Well said mate. 🍺👍

Fezec

What an earth did you take umbrage to in the above?

Victor Lin

Don’t worry. Their manager is Unai Emery. The only manager that sacked by us in the past few decades. That’s why they didn’t kill the game when we down to 10 men. 3-0 to Arsenal.

Qwaliteee

Terry Neil went for much less – getting knocked out of the League Cup by third division Walsall pretty much sealed his fate.

North Bank Gooner

What big game?

Ayobami

Come on you Gunners

Anon456

100% behind the team,its not the day to protest tomorrow – we’ve got plenty of dead premier league games left to do that. Agree totally that football with Europes elite has to be eared, and it wasn’t very clever of the Kroenke’s, or the other dozen clubs (the ESL). I haven’t lost total faith in the Kroenke’s yet though – they forked out for Partey last summer, and with the losses the club has taken this season lets see what finances they provide this summer – I love the self sustaining model, but they will need to protect the business… Read more »

Daveo

The “it could be worse, so chill” approach is exactly how the world is manipulated and exploited by corporations, greedy billionaires, and corrupt officials. If we want the game changed then boycott and protest.

Anon456

They are not all greedy though are they? The Bill and Melinda gates foundation has had 50bn of the couples wealth to to be used for good, and their children are only inheriting 10m a piece of the 100bn fortune, with the rest going to charity.

The Walton’s also do a lot for good causes, as do numerous other billionaires.

A lot of what I read on this board seems to be why don’t we spend 500m on players, and the owners are the greedy ones…. really??

Daveo

Microsoft has used cheap sweatshop labour to produce products for decades: https://observers.france24.com/…/20090212-working-hp… They’ve been shipping profits offshores for decades to avoid taxes: https://www.cnbc.com/…/silicon-valley-giants-accused-of… https://www.seattletimes.com/…/how-microsoft-parks…/ They spend millions on political lobbying: https://www.onmsft.com/…/microsoft-spent-about-8-5… Microsoft like other tech Giants drive profits through a disposable economy of “planned obselesence” that is full of waste and negligences: https://www.smartcompany.com.au/…/apple-and-microsoft…/ Sure Bill Gates might have done some nice things, but paying employees properly, actually paying taxes (instead of taking every means possible to avoid every last cent), and lack of corporate sustainability and accountability are BS. Philanthropy is nothing but PR spin to make multi-billionaires seem like… Read more »

Biggles

You treat a link between “changing the game” and a boycott/protests as somehow having been proven. But there’s no actual evidence of that, is there.

Daveo

Certainly got more chance of working that sighing and signing up to more subscriptions.

A gorilla

Owners aren’t even there, just the players and some commentators. Why not protest on another day rather than literally our biggest game this season

Qwaliteee

Spot on mate. 👍🍺

Badaab

real ‘my country right or wrong’ energy here

Okester

What does that even mean? Genuine question. Do not understand what you’re saying.

Qwaliteee

They didn’t ‘fork out’ for Partey. It was a loan that the club have got to pay back.

I’m surprised he doesn’t charge us interest. He would if he could.

Okester

You were doing so well until the “ I haven’t lost faith in the Kroenke”bit.. I assume that’s where you started picking up the majority of your down votes..
They’ve truly been awful for Arsenal Football Club.

Qwaliteee

And people keep telling me that ‘not one Arsenal fan backs Kroenke.’

Unfortunately there are probably hundreds, if not thousands. Weak as nats’ piss.

Nainsley Aitland Miles

Won’t happen but I’d like to see Arteta show some guts and roll out a 4-1-4-1 and hit them by surprise with an extra player in attack.

Back four of Bellerin Holding Gabriel Xhaka.

Partey in front of them.

Then another row of four of Saka Odegaard ESR Martinelli.

Aubameyang #9.

2-0 to the Arsenal.

Baichung Bhutia

Get one over Villarreal tomorrow, spank Manchester United in Gdansk on 26 May “
Or we could spank Villareal and get one over Manchester United.

Or Roma.

Jarghs

The only thing that might be better than, or at least on par with, us reaching the final, is Roma pulling off the comeback to end all comebacks against manure.

SB Still

One good thing for the opponents against ManU for the finals is, they a busy schedule, including 3 matches in 5 days from this Sunday. They are not easy games either.

Arteta has a genius plan and made the league games into dead rubbers for us 🙂

About our game tomorrow though, I was shitting bricks before/during the 1st leg. Now I’m shitting 3D printed houses!

Thierrys_Tears

Should we step on the gas pedal? I wish our Manager had the gravitas to actually not have to speak in clichés.

Biggles

Yes, he is prone to that and also stating the ble*ding obvious at times.

Biggles

It’s obviously the most important so far. With reports that Sarri being lined up as a possible replacement in the Summer perhaps Arteta also has everything resting on success in the EL, as well as the team

#define

The team signed up an inexperienced manager, can’t expect him to perform at the level of experienced managers. Arteta needs time, and if we thought he would somehow magically conjure up better results than Emery with the same squad, well, it was wishful thinking. I assume they signed him up for the long haul, and so either fans stick with him over the next couple of years as he learns on the job, or we can keep changing managers every couple of years like other teams with (potentially) incremental success.

Biggles

Yes, very logical and well argued and, for what it’s worth I don’t think he’ll be sacked regardless of what happens in the EL. That said, neither you or I know what will happen or what’s planned. Things can change very quickly in football – and not necessarily logically.

We do know, however, that there has been considerable criticism of Arteta, his decision making, tactics, team selection etc. If I was an owner also under pressure, changing the manager would be an option, perhaps with a couple of unexpected, “big name” signings thrown in during the summer window.

Hank Scorpio

Firstly, by your logic the more inexperienced the manager, the longer opportunity should be given to achieve minimum acceptable performance. Secondly, we have actually gone backwards from Emery’s time. The club isn’t here to act as a training ground for Arteta’s management career. I’ve seen very little evidence that he’s learning from his mistakes. Here’s hoping we win the Europa League. If not, I see no compelling reason to keep him on lest we waste another season. Fact is we have a better squad than a number of teams above us. That predicament is due largely to an inexperienced and… Read more »

Martin R

What reports? Pure media speculation without any basis whatsoever

Biggles

Reports in the media of course. What else? It doesn’t mean the reports are correct, on the other hand it doesn’t necessarily mean that there false either. We’ll just have to wait and see, won’t we.

Biggles

*they’re false [this keyboard has a mind of its own]

N85

Which Arsenal will turn up tomorrow and (maybe) the final. FA Cup winning Arsenal or Eurpoa League final in Baku Arsenal. Who the fuck knows? Arteta is as unsure as the rest of us.

John NotCena

Alright Mikel, it’s time to put aside the distractions and work on a winning approach for this game. Yes the protests are a distraction from football but this is a new development yet your team have seemed distracted from their duties all season. Turn a new leaf at the right time and save our season and your job. Otherwise, you must be rightfully terminated for complete and abject failure to lead this great club.
Good luck

Billy bob

He should wum the journalists by asking them what they mean by the word “big” – are we talking tall, rotund, etc

Goo-nerd

Respectfully, instead of this non-story I think Arseblog News should write about Jens Lehmann saying a black reporter for Sky Sports Germany (and ex-footballer) was there to make up a quota.

Biggles

It’s certainly a very unfortunate turn of events but I guess it shows that everything people “say” in media of all sorts may (well) come back to haunt them.

Okester

My thoughts exactly. After reading it on BBC site, I came here to see Blog’s take on the story.
What made Lehman’s post even worse was, he’d clearly meant to send it to someone else, and has tried to make out he was taken out of context. If you’re going to be a blatant racist Lehman at least have the courage to own it and apologise when caught.
Forever tarnished for me, and also disappointed this story has not been picked up by Blogs.

Paul

If Arteta sold snake oil, I think I’d be compelled to buy it!

He’s such a damn smooth talker.

Just pray his men deliver. 🤲

Hank Scorpio

He can certainly talk the talk. Shame he can’t walk the walk

Qwaliteee

He looks the part, I’ll give him that.

Wardrobe by Pep.
Hair by Gorilla Glue.

Qwaliteee

He should leave Arsenal and manage the Rams then.

Arsene for CEO

This might sound very biased but i think arseblog would have won the Pulitzer if they weren’t writing about just one team in one sport which at the end of the day remains one of the biggest businesses in distracting from reality. It is important to the fans and the players and club and the manager but with some perspective, it’s only really important if we win.

Sibbo

Given the recent upheaval at the club with the ESL broohaha, would Arteta be given more or less latitude if (and I mean IF) the sale of the club goes through. How has his tenure been impacted by the fact that KSE could give a flying fig about the true nature of the club, it’s an investment for them.
I suspect there won’t be any more money to throw around but there will be a regenerated club spirit, which has been sadly missing for the past few years. Despite the claims that it hasn’t.

Qwaliteee

I hope not. Unless we win the Europa, then the man needs to go.

If we win the Europa and get into the ECL via the back door, then it would be churlish not to give the man a stay of execution to see how he does.

But if we don’t win it – that’s it. Arteta Out.

This was a really well-written article. A light-hearted take on a (frankly) boring subject that still remains as straight to the point as a knife tip. I really enjoyed reading this one.

Billy bob

How come my posts all go straight into moderation? I’ve not moved from being a newbie under moderation since I started contributing over a year ago?

Qwaliteee

In all of my 50 odd years supporting this club, I’ve never had to nigh force myself get invested in a game – never mind one of this relative magnitude. But there you go. No doubt by the time the teams walk out of the tunnel I’ll feel a bit more ‘Christmassy’ about it – but it’s still a weird and, I have to say, a somewhat bloody depressing feeling to have before Arsenal play in a European semi final second leg. It just doesn’t feel like ‘Arsenal’ at the moment. Hopefully attending tonight’s demonstration and sinking a few beers… Read more »

Bryan

I wanna say this .at first i thought tuchel wont last 6 month .but look at wat he has done .experience is important in a coaching job.not necessarily for a footballer if the talent is there.secondary who says young guns aint the future of football? Look at chelsea .arteta keep talking rubbish bout how too much young guns shouldnt be fielded but its same kids who have saved our season from been a total mess.i pray zhaka doesnt cost us a goal today at left back.i remember him flashing a cross ,across our 18yard box last week n i just… Read more »