“Extraordinarily challenging, incredibly stimulating then I’d say, three dots, big opportunity coming up.”

That was Mikel Arteta’s assessment of the season when asked for a short description ahead of Sunday’s final game against Brighton. 

While there’s no doubt that Arsenal have underperformed this year, it’s pretty clear the Spaniard will be in the dugout come the first game of next season. But what makes him so confident that the Gunners are well-placed to do big things? 

“Because of the potential that we have, the people that we have around the club and what we want to do,” he says. 

“It’s a huge challenge again because of the expectations that we have. But I see an opportunity to do what we want to do and it has to be now. 

“There’s already a lot that’s happened in the last three or four seasons and now we have to break the line and aim for something different. I think the context is going to help to do that. That’s why I see it as an opportunity.”

While Covid-19 and our failure to secure Champions League has taken a big toll on our financial muscle, Arteta has hinted the club’s owners will help him strengthen the squad this summer. He maintains it’s the only option if Arsenal are going to close the gap on their rivals. 

Asked whether he’s worried about a big club snapping up Harry Kane from Sp*rs, he replied: “This is the level and this is the competition in this country. 

“The other top teams are going to go big in the summer because they are frustrated that they’ve not won the title that everybody is supposed to think that they have to. 

“They are going to invest, they are going to improve their squads and they’re not going to stop where they are.”

Arsenal will need to beat Brighton tomorrow and hope that Sp*rs and Everton drop points if we’re to maintain our record of qualifying for Europe every season since 1996. Even if we do snatch a seventh-place finish in the Premier League, there’s an argument to be made that participation in UEFA’s newly created, third-tier Europa Conference League will be an unnecessary distraction from domestic matters. 

It’s all a far cry from competing regularly for the Champions League; a competition we’ve been divorced from for four years. All the same, Arteta maintains that Arsenal must continue to shoot for the stars – even if they seem further away than ever – while also noting that measures of success are changing across the board. 

“There cannot be any other ambition of this football club,” he said. “If you don’t have that, we won’t reach it. There’s only one winner of the Champions League and only one winner of the Premier League, the rest of the teams have failed. For any of the other teams, finishing second or third is not a big achievement. 

“Now the perception is different. Now it’s an achievement to be third or fourth in this league but do the fans agree with that, probably not, but internally people who are working every day and knows the standards that have been set, it’s different. 

“Last year with 61 or 62 points you were fifth in the league, almost in the Champions League. This season you won’t be there. And next season, you won’t be there because the level is increasing all the time.”

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Chris

I just hope they back him with some investment conference league or not

PeteyB

Looking at the fixtures today (Everton go to City while Spuds are at Leicester) it’s boarding probable that we’ll end up in that competition, though we have, of course, had our issues with Brighton in recent years.

Personally I’d be inclined lose today and focus on next year.. but MA won’t think that way, and getting ahead of Spuds would also be delicious.

Let’s hope Everton pull something out of the hat so we can have our cake and eat it too

Qwaliteee

Investment? 🤣

Stan doesn’t ‘invest.’

He loans.

Goldfingered

Bla bla bla fuckedy fuckedy fuck…

It’s the same old, same old situation.

Motley rocks!!

I’m pretty drunk but what the fuck is a potentional of anything?

God night my goonies

Johnny 4 Hats

Happy boilk fella 😊

Filsuf

With edu at the helm, I think big money transfers are not going to take us anywhere. Let’s take the dortmund route. They’re having a field day raiding English youths the likes of Sancho and Bellingham.

No wonder Arteta likes his non negotiables. He really doesn’t know how to negotiate.

Qwaliteee

He really doesn’t know, period.

Spanish Gooner

Dortmund benefit from playing in the poorest of the top 5 leagues, with 4 fewer games and no league cup so it’s easy to develop players away from the spotlight. Obviously we can and should sign talented youngsters, but we can’t just go raiding the City u17 squad like they can. They also pay a lot of agent commissions, which is something Edy has been criticised for

Badaab

3 dots

Disarmed Gunner

I wish he’d stop talking.

Qwaliteee

This.

bob

I wish you’d learn this is how interviews work and that media duties are a contractual obligation for any manager.

Guy asks questions, manager provides answers, these are then quoted in news articles, much like the one above.

Hope that has clarified things.

Zet

Arteta is better at media communication than actual football tactics and player selection.

PeterSM

Yeah, the talking is too much

Wiltoooooooooord !!!

“Now it’s an achievement to be third or fourth in this league”
They should name it “The Arsene Wenger Trophy

That man knew everything years ahead of its time, what a visionary

moxrex

I feel sad when I watch Arsenal play nowadays. It is no longer fun watching and I understand the fans booing recently but lets keep the protest for end of the season. We don’t want to make scapegoats for the problems. We want a proper fix. I don’t care how much KSE spends if we are winning the league but as of now they need to spend and spend intelligently which is a big ask. Also make sure that you buy what is asked by Arteta. Don’t repeat the mistakes of Emery era when he wanted a 6’6″ player and… Read more »

ObiKing

This guy should be a government spokesperson or run a financial concern on wall street. He would fit right in. Talks too much and is brilliant at deflecting.

Fabregooner

Right, that’s it, I’ve read tons of comments from so-called fans today and I’ve cracked. What do you want him to say? Nothing? He’s answering questions from the press. He’s answering them intelligently and articulately, and talking up the club and how excited he is to be managing it. Wtf do you want?

Qwaliteee

Yes, mate, you have cracked. 🤣

SarcasmB0t

“I have failed to achieve the expectations that had been set at the beginning of the season. Being ready to manage the club of this size is ‘non-negotiable’, and this season has shown that I’m clearly not.
That’s why I resign from the position of Manager of Arsenal Football Club. I wish the club and my succesor the best.”

That’s what I’d like him to say.

Instead it’s bullshit like: “Wow, I’m excited how much we can improve next season!” – yeah, that’s cause we can’t realistically do much worse than you just have.

SarcasmB0t

Sorry pal, but you don’t get to talk about “the expectations that we have.”

If we had any expectations, you’d have been fired after the Villareal fiasco.

The expectation clearly is that the team will continue to struggle in midtable and won’t seriously challenge for Champions League places.

That’s the only explanation for the owners continuing to tolerate the failure which is you.