Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Arteta on player effort, Arsenal’s level and plans for the summer

Since last week’s Europa League semi-final exit at the hands of Villarreal, Mikel Arteta has cut a pretty miserable figure.

Tasked with getting the club back into the Champions League, his side’s failings on the pitch this season have the potential to derail a project that has been struggling for momentum since success in the Community Shield back in August.

He insists he has the backing of the club’s board and that they’ve offered funds to help him further reshape his squad but against the backdrop of the pandemic, he knows it’s going to be complicated.

It’s hard to tell if he just needs a holiday or if the pressure is starting to get to him, but the Spaniard was spiky with the media before and after Sunday’s win over West Bromwich Albion and he hadn’t shaken the bad mood before sitting down with them on Tuesday morning.

Interestingly, without naming names, he was happy to suggest that some players haven’t given their all this season.

On whether the players have given their maximum this season…

With the majority of them, yes.

On how he gets the maximum out of all of them in the future…

Again, finding a different way to do it. Challenging them again. Putting somebody next to them to try to push them again. Some of them can get to a certain level and you cannot push them any further. You want to evolve them but it’s not possible. 

On whether he’d prefer to be in the Europa Conference League or out of Europe altogether…

I think if we have a possibility to be in Europe, it’s ideal for our club. 

On fewer games next season making it harder to develop young players…

I think they would be in a different development phase next season with what they have achieved this season. To use the same criteria with all the young players that might be here, we will have to find a way in other competitions to accommodate the playing time that they need. 

On needing a smaller squad…

We already had a very large squad at the start of last season and not very balanced in certain positions as well. What we’ve been trying to do is streamline that down and put it in a way that is much more sustainable and makes more sense for the qualities and positions that we need.

If the majority have played well, why has the team failed to deliver results…

It’s difficult to judge where we should finish and where our realistic level is. When I said the majority, I didn’t say all of them. Some have some big contributions to make to those results. 

On the current level of the squad…

It’s the one that we’ve shown. Over 38 games, it doesn’t lie. 

On sacrificing big players to raise funds this summer…

Let’s see what happens. It’s difficult to predict that one. In general, we wouldn’t like to do that because we only want to be stronger. It’s clear that we want to improve the team. We need some resources. 

On extending David Luiz’s contract…

We already spoke about it. At the end of the season, the decision will be made. 

On how Thomas Tuchel has made an impact so quickly while he has struggled…

I’ll leave that answer to you. But to compare two scenarios like this, it’s very different. 

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Vincent Ives

The problem with so many of his answers here, is that the squad he has is capable of a lot better than our league position suggests.

Bossman Bill

I don’t agree, I think most of them are bang average.

If theoretically you could get every single player to play at the height of their ability, individually and as a team, then maybe we’d get CL. But that’s unrealistic with the players we have.

They’re just not good enough to do that.

Canadagoon

I’m with Bill. I think we have an average squad, who outside of KT, Saka, ESR interests the best sides in the country? You could argue MCity need a striker so they’d take Auba, but the others like Liverpool, Utd, Spurs (sadly), Leicester all are sorted there.

Atom

Partey, Martinelli, Saliba (on potential), Pepe all would have interest from CL level clubs if we sold them. Leno prior to this year has been 1 of the top 2-3 PL keepers statistically. This squad is not nearly as bad as they performed this year.

Gooner79

The squad performed just as bad last year.

Futsboller

I know it didn’t look like it sometimes, but I thought we were a bit better defensively — cost us some productivity at the other end, but we felt much more secure, at least in the PL.

Atom

We added several quality players – Saka was a year older, Partey , ESR, Gabriel. There was supposed to be massive improvement.

Hank Scorpio

Exactly. Compare the squad with Everton, West Ham, Spurs and even the likes of Villa and Leeds. The biggest gains won’t come from new players but from a new manager or the existing one making some fundamental changes to his approach to the job. Whether Arteta is capable of being self-critical or just going to revert to type and try micromanage his way out of this with more elaborate tactics etc remains to be seen.

dcgooner

I disagree.. I think we’re very imbalanced compared to Everton, West Ham and Spurs… even when I try to think about our best 11, I can’t find a squad that complements one another. We have a lot of one dimensional players. Xhaka is the #1 example.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Pépé will be Watford’s Willian in five years.

Dave Cee

Partey has been dross for us. On the manager or the player, that’s the question

Qwaliteee

🤣 In your own time mate…..

Mpls

When the errors are continued misplaced passes, row ZZ shots, and turning the ball over in our third, it’s hard to blame the Manager for those.. Now with Ceballos.. that’s a 50/50 ball in my book. Ceballos goes off on holiday (on the pitch), Arteta plays him in the middle again a few matches later. ESR has been in and out with injuries, so too Tierney and Odegaard, Partey has had his share disrupting progress. Until we get some stability and quality in midfield, we’re right fooked no matter the manager. We’ve had a few clearly good matches when we… Read more »

Inspector norse

They are good enough, no doubt about it. Look at a team like West ham 16. last season. A manager that squeezes the best out of every single player is the difference, West ham is nowhere near as good as us, on paper. tactics and team structure are also vital and were not even close too where we should be.

Reality check

Yep, i don’t think even Everton and Leicester have a better squad than ours. They just don’t experiment too much, just stick to their best 11 as much as they can. I am not sure if Arteta has ever played the same 9 or 10 let alone 11 player in two consecutive games..

Bossman Bill

West Ham changed half their team from last year, and, since you mentioned it, have a better midfield than ours. I would take Lingard, Soucek, Koufal, Cresswell, Antonio and Rice as first team squad players in a heartbeat.

Yes our team is underperforming, yes the manager is annoying, but the players are (obvious exceptions aside) mid table players.

If you think that the likes of Xhaka, Cedric, Mari, Elneny, Leno, Holding, Willian, Pepe and Lacazette would get into any of the champions league squads, you are literally high.

dcgooner

This! West Ham have an athletic, talented, hard working midfield. Id take 4 of the 5 that you named in a heartbeat. I like Pepe, Laca, Holding and Mari.. but they’re all limited players. They’re not complete players. Even Song and his limited abilities is better in many ways than Xhaka. And in a team its easier to complement Song for example than it is to find a complementary player to Xhaka. Xhaka is not creative enough to be a 10 and not fast or athletic enough to be a DM.. so in order for him to work in a… Read more »

FMT

You lost me after you added Laca and Pepe to that list. They are way above the other guys you mentioned. In addition, I think the bigger challenge we have is with Arteta.

Inspector norse

Im high, on drugs i assume, if i don’t agree with you ? And Lingard is suddenly one of the greats of european football ? Surely he is not, but he has the advantage of being in a team with clear instructions, tactics and a structure to base their play on. Do you not see the advantages that has for any player ?

Qwaliteee

Rubbish. That squad is more than capable of putting in a decent effort for top six and even top four. They’re all internationals, most of them full internationals who didn’t become full internationals playing for Arteta. We could have the worlds best and he’d still have them playing a never ending horseshoe or allowing the opposition time to get XI behind the ball after a break from our own half. And even if one or two of our current lads have lost their Mojo, then who the hell can blame them? It must be especially soul destroying for naturally gifted… Read more »

Reality check

They are putting out bang average performances, which is mostly down to Arteta’s rookie mistakes and some very arrogant decisions.
Liverpool won the league last season and the CL the season before. However, the performances they put out this season would also make them a bang average squad which it’s not.

Vaibhav Pandey

So who do you blame for Pool’s underachievement? Klopp or injuries or schedule or no preseason or players or board or owners or who? Put the same perspective for Arsenal when you answer that.

Public Elneny

Cycling off the PEDs

Atom

Liverpool has had massive injury problems this year.

Ash

Klopp

If Liverpool don’t finish top 4 then it’s all on Klopp
Man City lost Laporte last season but they still came second easily

Liverpool are good enough for top 4 finish

Qwaliteee

🤣

How can you put the same perspective with us on a Liverpool side who were Premiership Champions last season and Champions of Europe the season before?

They’ve merely had a bad run of games that all teams go through from time to time. They’ll be there or there abouts next season that’s for sure.

We, meanwhile, just about won the FA Cup and have since gone into hilarious free fall, playing football that would cure insomnia in seconds.

Klopp and his managerial pedigree are worth 100 of the clenched-haired rookie clown we’ve got in charge.

Mpls

Well I’m sure to Liverpool supporters, after having won the CL and the Premiership the two previous years, they are surely in their form of ‘freefall’. They’re just falling from a higher elevation.

goonshow

Because – as you’re so fond of pointing out ad nauseum – ‘the table doesn’t lie’. And that same table has the Scousers just TWO points ahead of our ‘hilarious free-fall’ as you put it. Let’s add in – again, as you kindly point out – that this is from a position at the very top of both England and Europe. It is also with a seasoned manager, and a stable team and club structure. So who, exactly, is in free fall? Twist reality all you want to suit your nihilistic attitude to our club – most of us fans… Read more »

A Gorilla

This is a good squad of footballers. Better than Leicester, for instance. No set formation, and players played out of position time and time again. Also, the players have underperformed.
A bad season from everyone at this great club. Must. Do. Better.

Naigooner

If Arsene Wenger or even Tuchel was in charge of this exact players, how do you think they’d perform?

Naigooner

Would Tuchel get to UEFA final with these players?

goonshow

That’ll be the Tuchel we just beat on his own patch?

Francesc

Tuchel may have done better, Arsene same.

Qwaliteee

They’re all being forced to play a rigid system. This ridiculous business of checking back and passing sideways and backwards, instead of some free flowing forward moving expression. I cannot remember the last time we broke down a wing at full pelt and the winger got a first time cross in for a forward who had made the parallel run on the centre. I cannot remember the last time we broke an offside trap with a weighted pass through the opposition D. I cannot even remember the last time we scored direct from a corner. Hell, I can’t remember the… Read more »

Andy

Did he say the majority try 100pc? So up to 50pc of his squad aren’t giving everything. That is an extraordinary admission.

John C

Let’s look at the facts, the year Wenger left we were 37 points off the champions, 12 points off 4th and finished 6th.

This season we’re 31 points off the champions and 12 points off 4th and sit 9th. Both sides lost 13 matches in the league.

Is it a question of us getting worse or the teams below us getting better? Or a combination of the 2?

What pace do people realistically think that gap can be closed considering we’re on our 2nd manager in 3 years?

Qwaliteee

With the Kroenkes and Arteta at the helm?

How about the twelve of never….?

Goonermatty

Its all so banal isn’t it…

Qwaliteee

His pressers reflect the football he peddles.

Boring as fuck.

Vaibhav Pandey

your comments are no different btw 😉

LEFT08

Arsene couldn’t do it under Kroenke. Emery couldn’t do it under Kroenke. Arteta isn’t doing in under Kroenke. See a pattern there?

SB Still

Yes, Kronke doesn’t know to run a football club and has the wrong managers and director of football, even Wenger overstayed, Emery not suited for PL, Arteta too early.

Hope it’s the same pattern you were alluding to!

Daveo

100%, incompetence at all levels of AFC. Owners only interested in asset appreciation that have employed very poorly in terms of the people that would run the club for them. ESL, scouting fiasco, Martinez sale and now Leno looking like he will leave, Saliba handling, Raul and the Kia farce, Willian Signing, the Ozil fiasco, making the same mistake again with Auba, rumours we’re about to do it again with Lacazette, continued slide down the EPL standings, poor managerial hirings, and of course the mid-COVID sackings. We’re embarrassing on and off the pitch. What standards does the club now hold… Read more »

Atom

Seems pretty clear there’s going to be quite a few outgoing this summer. Interesting to see Arteta increasingly blaming the players for the season. Eddie, Laca, luiz, guendouzi, torreira all look set to exit. Rumors that Leno and Hector both want out so suspect they move on. Most interesting thing will be if Auba can find an exit as hard to believe he wants to spend the last of his good years on this.

Bossman Bill

Leno is having a laugh if he thinks he’s going to a top CL team. He’s really no better than Fabianski was, or Ospina. He’s just German and icecold so he’s got an easier ride.

Atom

Statistically he was in the top 2-3 PL keepers every year he’s been here except this year. He’s been dramatically under rated for most of his time here

Daveo

He’s always been error prone:
https://twitter.com/optajoe/status/1211312896346644481?lang=en
(From his one of his “top” years – 2019). He was even renowned for his errors at Leverkuesen:
https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/transfers/arsenal-sign-bernd-leno-transfer-goalkeeper-unai-emery-germany-leverkusen-a8407366.html
And this year he’s been poor and his save% has fallen off a cliff so even his elite shot stopping is now questionable. You’re only as good as your last game (or even season) and Leno is just not that good.

Atom

His expected goals conceded relative to actual goals conceded has prior to this year put him as one of the top 2-3 keepers. Even good players can have a dip in form – particularly playing for this team. Leno single handily saved us for much of last year when we had no defense.

goonshow

And he’s been dramatically worse this year. Flapped at Zouma’s soft loopy header and almost gave HFB his mandatory goal against us!
And his distribution to the outfield remains absolutely shocking.

loose_cannon

Tbf I could imagine him doing well in a team that doesn’t make 500 back passes a game…

Qwaliteee

Mate, Leno saved our bacon time and time and time again. Especially when he had Mustafi and Co clowning about in front of him.

People have got such short memories.

Unknown

You are way out of your depth here mate. Leno has made mistakes no doubt about that but Leno has in games single handedly been responsible for Arsenal not losing. He is also quite possibly responsible for Arsenal not being in relegation scrap due to Unai Emery defence or lack there of. No GK can be comfortable when your defensive line can’t handle pressure and can’t get out of their own way. He’s far from best GK out there but he’s way better than your assertions.

Qwaliteee

Top post, well said.

Cangooner

Agreed – he has had a rough patch for sure, but could you imagine how much worse the last two seasons would have been without him? His mistakes have cost us a handful of points, no doubt. But his shot stopping (especially under Emery) saved us *many* times. If he wants to go then we should look to replace him, but I think he’s far from the biggest problem this squad has.

El Mintero

Our defense improved notably this year but Leno definitely cost us at least 4 games feb-March with stupid mistakes. I won’t be shedding a tear when he moves, only annoyed we sold emi and kept Bernie boy who now wants to bail as fast as possible. Good, get him the fck out.

Daveo

I mean a tad hard, but you’re right. We had the 4th lowest shots on target against in the whole league, 3rd lowest goals against in the whole league. But were 11th best in save% and we know Leno continued to commit bad errors as he’s done throughout his career. He’s just not that good. Solid, but not even close to being an elite level keeper and that is the option we chose – and now he looks like he’s choosing to leave.

Bossman Bill

Nope. He’s a decentish keeper who looks better than he is because he’s always busy. But he doesn’t make always make good decisions, he’s prone to punching it too much, and generally you get the vibe that the team isn’t as solid with him as it could be.

The team’s best spell in the last calendar year has been when he wasn’t playing.

Ealing

Leno’s saves kept us from losing 4-1 in the first leg of the semifinal, we had a chance because of him. Made horror shows with red card and against Everton but there you are

Charles MMM

I just can’t help the nagging feeling that I’m starting to have that Arteta is seriously out of his dept at Arsenal. He probably should have started with a smaller club. He thinks so highly of himself (this is beyond self-confidence) and he needs to realise that he’s not Pep and can never be him. Let him chat his own cause of actions and quit trying to be someone he’s not. The board too need to wake up before it’s too late for Arsenal.

Canadagoon

Genuinely curious which of his comments came off as so arrogant to you?

Mentalista

I don’t like this kind of article that doesn’t provide the full quotes, but here’s one: On the current level of the squad…It’s the one that we’ve shown. Over 38 games, it doesn’t lie.  The table doesn’t lie about the level of the team performance, not just the squad. It comes across as arrogant because it implies no other manager could have done better with this same squad. Contrast that to AW, who was often labeled as arrogant in his answers, but *always* claimed his squad had the quality to win the league (though implicitly hinting otherwise when he’d blame… Read more »

Qwaliteee

Totally agree. It’s fucking ridiculous to judge our season ‘since Christmas.’ That’s crap. The season is 38 games – not ‘since the Chelsea game.’ The reason we are largely where we are is because of the pigswill that our creativity starved midfield served up before that Chelsea game. People talk about the Chelsea game as though it was some kind of eureka moment, the damascene turning point. Well, he finally introduced Saka and ESR – more by luck than judgement. But the fact remains that since that Chelsea game we have, for the most part, still turned out some awful… Read more »

Awesomesauce25

Curious as well. He just seems to tell it like it is without delving into details that should be kept internal or would be damaging to individual players performance. I don’t have any problem with that. We’ve complained about the quality of our players for years. Note we have players that were the vision of three different managers in one team. I’m on board with waiting a couple seasons for his influence to have an impact and skill to develop. I’m fairly confident if he can recruit the attitudes and the talents he envisions his for his team, he’ll get… Read more »

Qwaliteee

The whole lot?

Qwaliteee

He is out of his depth. Way out of his depth. The sooner this farce is over and we get in someone who knows what he is doing, the better.

The trouble is, no decent manager worth his salt would touch this club with a barge pole whilst Kroenke is in charge.

That’s why they both need to go.

Yodathegooner

If we want and need change, then it has to happen with the owners first!

#Kroenkeout

Andy

But how? Demonstrations and tags mean fuck all to Stan.

Andy

Nagging feeling? Look at the table .. it’s self evident that he’s floundering badly.

Alexander Fast

He is being honest. As much as we like some of our players based on their FIFA ranking you see what they get you. Hope after the window it will be his squad next season and we will see how far that gets us.

ausDrexler

I think its too early to put the blame entirely on Arteta. Some players have under performed, some were performing poorly with Emery too so its fair to suggest that the players do make a case for the team being average. Really good players perform more games then not. Arsenals really good players are performing sometimes, and are absolute shite more times then they are good. Some of this is on the manager, some of it is on the clubs recruitment, some of this is on the players. Its been a really crappy season. Will be glad to see it… Read more »

Gooner79

We need to start creating more clear cut chances and scoring goals. I don’t know how he’ll easily fix this issue.

Unknown

Arteta over thinks things tactically before the game and finds himself having to micromanage immediately and throughout the game when other team does something he didn’t think of and he’s left his team set up exposed – this is what doomed Emery amongst other things. He made huge mistakes this season by setting up the team the way HE WANTS them to play instead of setting up your team to play to your players’ strength. I still don’t know if Laca is CF, ST or false 9 in most games, is Auba LW or ST, why is Willian preferred over… Read more »

Hank Scorpio

Agreed. He’s only outsmarting himself and leaving the players confused and subdued. If he cut this shit out I think it would make a significant difference to performance.

The_Golden_Wrigglesworth

“I take full responsibility” 😉

bob

To be fair, this isn’t incompatible with that message.

He takes full responsibility at the end of the day for results. But when asked if all the players in his squad are good enough for what he wants to do, it’s clear that they aren’t.

Saying this isn’t shirking responsibility. Quite the opposite as he will ultimately be responsible for replacing them this summer, which was what the journo was asking about.

Bleeding gums murphy

Does that include Willian who Arteta was instrumental in bringing to the squad and playing him week in week out for a long while whilst he was clearly not good enough.

loose_cannon

He’s the Keir Starmer of managers, a novice with nice hair that we all wanted to do well, but is finding the top job too big for them, too much too soon. Both are a little confused about what it means to “take full responsibility”. Both are discipline hawks that lack creativity/flexibility and, despite talking a good game, find it difficult to really articulate their vision. Both have time to turn it around, more due to the relative weakness of their employer than anything else, but not much.

Baichung Bhutia

I had a feeling Arteta wouldn’t be sacked before the Europa league game, but didn’t expect there would be absolutely no pressure at all. Thought Edu or Vinai would come out and say something about the disappointment of the season.

rhal

Edu-Vinai-Arteta is a situation like Gazidis-Wenger. The manager accepts to be the public face of the failure while the executives hide behind him so their own shortcomings are minimized. I doubt, even if Arteta gets something tragic like a thrashing against a rival, Edu and co will publicly display disappointment. They know very well this is their project too.

Javoroncov

This squad blaming will end ugly next season. Arteta will be sacked mid season, leaving the club with another panic appointment and a bunch of unwanted players.
But again, if Arsenal relegates it’s a just result of the incompetence and inaction that allows someone with the worst record in decades to con tinue

Gabigol

You can’t push a player to improve at the top level. You also need to unlock any fears or blockages they have mentally.

That way they are self motivated to improve in additional areas or their main area.

Gabigol

But saying that, your team is only as strong as the weakest link in the chain. Especially with modern football more focussed on position, transitions and opposition analysis. It makes it hard to compete if you have a weak team. Even if 90% of the players are amazing it only takes one lapse in concentration from any one of: Guendouzi Ceballos Xhaka Mustafi Kola Luiz And to a lesser extent some big games from some players but have lapses: Holding Tierney Leno Auba Hector Cedric Gabriel Laca Recently have to add Partey to this list The only reliable players who… Read more »

Tanned arse

There you go everybody, the current level of the squad is what they’ve shown over 38 games. That’s the squads level. Nothing to do with the manager. It’s the level of the squad. We’re right where we should be folks. So says our manager. Can’t stand this guy. Brings the levels down through the implementation of stupid strategies and tactics, poor utilisation of the players he has and awful in game management. Honestly the list of terrible management throughout the season is so long. I have no doubt that if brendan Rodgers (can’t stand the guy) for example had this… Read more »

bob

Bloody hell, way to take a sentence and run away with it! I can understand people are mad at Arteta considering our season, but don’t overreact. Think, journo asks “what’s the current level of this squad”. If he says better than what we have done, then you stick the knife in for that. If he says they’re all shite, then he’s slammed for that too. As it stands he has simply said, what should be uncontroversial, that the current level of the squad is reflected by our league position, and you’ve twisted that to say it’s “nothing to do with… Read more »

El Mintero

Spot on Bob.

Tanned arse

I’ve run away with it because I think it’s very telling about the kind of man he is and how he’s deflecting responsibility. Had he said the performances merit where we are then it’s a collective thing as he’s a part of that and no one can really argue. He doesn’t need to respond in extremes by saying ‘they’re all shite’. He’s said before that it needs improving which is fair. This time it’s a very clear message that we are going to finish where the level of the squad (that’s the players) deserves. Arteta is very deliberate in the… Read more »

Santori

In order of (achievable) priority if we had ANY ambition 1) Get rid of Edu. before he lays waste any more summer plans, bring in experience like Overmaars at Ajax or Campos at Lille. Pay for that. 2) Get rid of Venkathasem kick him sideways. No offense to him I’m sure he is good at managing our finances but we need someone with better clout leading us and providing vision/accountability. Get rid of Josh Kroenke too, send him back State side. Let the new man take on the leadership role. If anything it will ‘shield’ the Americans somewhat 3) Get… Read more »

Biggles

Interesting, if a tad negative. How many of those four do you really think will happen? As far as next season is concerned (I don’t think we can look beyond that at present), I would be very surprised indeed if any happened. We’ll see.

dcgooner

….at some point we have to live in reality.. and reality is 1,2,3 and 4 won’t happen. So why don’t we all stop being such entitled little *&#( and enjoy the process.

Im finding it hard being an Arsenal fan anymore not because of Arteta or Edu, but because of our entitled fanbase.

Han Kolo

Something to consider is that while the Arsenal squad is good enough to be higher in the league, that is based on our best 11. When fit and playing together they have generally given teams a good game. However it is the supporting cast who are costing us games. Look at the panic whenever Saka. Improving our squad players will make a big difference if we can recruit intelligently. Also this year we have had Europe when Everton, Villa, Leeds haven’t. When your squad isn’t good enough to have a separate Europa 11 in the knock out stages it begins… Read more »

Biggles

I agree. Successful teams are built nowadays on squad strength. I think that Liverpool still hold the record for winning the league with the fewest players -14 (I may be wrong) – but that was decades ago now. Times have changed, the game has changed, and if you just try to use the “best 11” most of the time the injury rate will surely increase and you’ll defeat the object because other players will have to be used. Our overall squad strength, while improved from a pretty low point, still isn’t where it should be to enable the club to… Read more »

Billy bob

The club needs to have a defined philosophy – thought we had that with Wenger’s “sexy” football!!! If the aim were to be to maintain fast flowing, exciting football, then you would look to have a manager that likes that style (not sure Arteta does) and recruit players to fit that style (Willian definitely doesn’t but he isn’t the only one) and thus make us an attractive team again (both from the perspective of players being keen to join and the fans liking what they see). The only thing we currently have going for us is that youth players are… Read more »

Domi

The only summer plans we should have is having another manager in place. Head coach, even better.

Cultured Determination

Since we are already at this stage we might as well allow the young guns to play as much as possible- saliba Gabriel tierney willock rowe saka martinelli balogun. Of course the likes of pepe partey auba Will be around. Thd rest… nah… Like.. You know… Willian…

zadok

One day, a good friend of Arteta told him: “One of my violinist doesn’t play well.” Arteta gave her a piece of advice: “Just give him a cello and tell him THIS IS YOUR JOB NOW”.

OnlyBeingHonest

The reason he’s so spikey is because of stupid questions like the last one

heihaci

Trust the PR process!

Francesc

Auba and Willian have absolutely thrown him under the bus

#Aubaout

Shance

Here’s the reality. Emery came 5th with this squad and got to a euro final, Arteta spent money on them, and now they’re worse. Finishing with a euro semi. They might not be great, but they’re not as bad as he has got out of them either.

SarcasmB0t

Not this squad. Worse squad than this one.

Iwobi and Mikhi instead of Pepe and Martinelli. Kolasinac instead of Tierney. No Partey. Saka was too young.

We had Mustafi.

This squad should be much better than the squad from two years ago. Our traditional rivals have had off seasons – we should be pushing them.
Instead we’ve sunk.

Gee, I wonder who the difference is.

Dave Cee

Whether or not Arteta is any good is up for debate. But what is certain is that he inherited a very unbalanced and poor squad. It does look ( slightly) better now. The results don’t. Signing Auba to a massive new deal and Willian and Luiz look like very expensive mistakes.
Age and wage down for me is the way forward.

SarcasmB0t

Does it look better though? I know we’ve all accepted it as a truism after Boxing Day, but I feel like we’ve relapsed. I certainly don’t think the team looked remotely good in either Villareal game, in the first leg against Slavia, the Everton game, the Villa game, or, honestly, in either of the last two league games that we won. It increasingly feels like this team is only able to win through sheer gap in quality and when the other team can match up to our players (who apparently haven’t been trying very hard), we look toothless and out… Read more »

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