Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Arteta: We have the tools, now we have to start winning

Mikel Arteta is hoping stability will breed consistency as his new-look Arsenal squad look to recover from a disastrous start to the new campaign.

After a summer transfer window in which the Gunners have spent £140 million – more than any other club in Europe – the Spaniard knows he’s under pressure to get the club off the foot of the table.

Defeats to Brentford, Chelsea and Manchester City have put the club under the microscope so it’s little wonder he seems to want to wipe the slate clean ahead of Saturday’s clash with fellow strugglers Norwich City.

“I am really looking forward to having everyone available and trying to start the season the way we want,” he told his pre-game press conference.

“We don’t want to use any excuses, we know how difficult the start was with injuries, a lot of covid issues we had and the extremely difficult games that we had. We have to reset now and we need to start, get everyone back on track and start to win football games, which is what we have to do.”

In addition to having key players back – Thomas Partey, Ben White and Gabriel are all fit after a spell on the sidelines – the boss is keen to see his side cut out the bad decision making that have pockmarked the early weeks of the season. From dodgy defending to Xhaka’s ridiculous red card at Manchester City, it’s been painful to watch for supporters.

“I just want to focus on that because the performance will lead to the result,” said Arteta.

“Everyone is going to talk about winning but you have to earn the right to do that and unfortunately in the last few games we have done basic things that haven’t allowed us to compete in the games like we want. If we do those right we will be much closer to winning football matches and that will bring momentum and everything will change.”

In normal circumstances, a manager working with a host of new players might expect some leeway while they gel. Unfortunately for Arteta, after a roller coaster two years in the Emirates hot seat, patience is running thin and he has to demonstrate an immediate improvement on the pitch. To be fair, he’s not hiding from the challenge.

“We have a completely different squad with the number of changes that you just mentioned. You can tell that is unheard of.

“Now we have the tools that we believe are going to give us the best opportunity to compete in the way we want to compete and build what we want to build in this project and now we have to make it work.

“We have to glide it together, we need to create relationships, chemistry, understanding. We have to adapt and we have to do that really quickly.”

On Arsenal’s position in the table, he added: “It’s nowhere near where we want to be. That’s for sure. I think it needs a little bit or perspective of what happened. Everybody is disappointed and we are no different. The fans are disappointed and everybody related to the club should be disappointed, but we are so determined and willing to change it as quickly as possible, and we are on it.”

Related articles


Notify of

newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Viju Jacob

Please use the tools wisely & don’t tinker with them.


Exactly. What I’d really like to see is that we’re able to identify our best 11 and our best formation, give them a run of games together and make only minor changes based on external factors like injuries or minor changes based on the specifics of each opponent. With so many new players who have never played together before, this is even more crucial. With the players that we have and with rather clear hierarchy in terms of quality, squad status or generally shared expectations of players in each position, we should be able to do that with no great… Read more »


I’d be more than happy to replace Leno with Ramsdale (and to a lesser extent Auba with Pepe). Ramsdale was brought in with the intent of being the future #1. Leno has been bang average for well over a year now and he doesn’t show much intent to stick around so why waste time on him. Ramsdale has big EPL experience, get him in; 24-30M quid is too much for a backup.


MA has told close associates he will resign if he doesn’t win convincingly on Saturday.

Heavenly Chapecoense

When did Pepe become a CF? He had a good run during the last five games of the previous season. That’s it.

Giuseppe Hovno

this lineup sounds sensible but i do want Pepe to play


pepe has been consistently one of our best players in recent times. he should definitely be starting. it’s not his fault we massively overpaid for him.


Considering the benefit of having two technical attackers (Odergaard and ESR) and Saka, the choice really comes down to shifting Pepe to striker and deciding between him and Auba. Personally, I think the position suits him and he has a longer future with the team than Auba so I’d go with pepe up top and 1st priority Auba 2nd.


i’d like to see pepe up top too – he would do well there i think but we can also play esr and odegaard in a two ahead of partey. especially against weaker teams where we expect to dominate it would allow us to have our two best creative midfielders playing in positions that suit them.

Heavenly Chapecoense

Pepe needed two years to adapt to the PL and you want him to be bewildered for another two years?


i would like to see esr and odegaard as two number eights ahead of partey. then we can play pepe on the right. saka/auba/pepe looks a very dangerous and tricky front three. we signed partey to boss the midfield and protect the defence – not to be a playmaker.


Sounds so exciting, yet I think Arteta will never ever play like this.


Interesting idea, I’d really like to see this happen

Viju Jacob

Well said.


We have a collection of tools, he got that right.


Nice words as usual. I hope it translates on the pitch this time. Really excited not to have Xhaka for now. Hopefully I’m right.
Ah, of course, I wish him quick recovery.


Xhaka is nailed down for 2 idiotic rushes of blood to his head a season

Last season it was the 2 Burnley games, which could have cost us 5 vital points

I’d have preferred we’d moved on this summer, but Xhaka is still one of our better players when he’s not brain farting

Like him or not, we’ll still need him this season


* when he’s not brainfarting and has the team’s tactics setup to cover his own personal limitations that affect how well others can play and when he’s not closed down immediately at every touch.

Sure when all that is considered he’s a pretty decent player.


No we don’t.

I’ll just repeat that.

No. We. Don’t.


All you do is repeat yourself, you’ve got nothing new or interesting to offer, all you’ve got is idiotic sound bites that stand up to no real type of scrutiny when you break them down


Erm….just mentioning that we don’t need Xhaka?

Here’s a sound bite for you.

We’re bottom of the table and haven’t scored a goal in over fours of football.

Scrutinise that.


We lost against Brentford, but there were some mitigating circumstances, we were without Aubameyang, Lacazette, Odegaard, Saka, Gabriel, Partey

We lost against a superior Chelsea side, when we were again missing key players

We lost to a superior City team, that cost north of a billion to construct, and we were again missing key players

The season is 38 games, not 3, there’s 105 points still to play for

We’ll get plenty of results this season, and we’ll likely finish 5th/6th over the course of the season, which is probably about our current level


* four hours


Absolute rubbish! Should have taken whatever Roma offered us for him. The player is an bloody liability and should have been gone ages ago.


Yep, time for excuses is over. Time to build and actually implement project youth and show direction and positive style on the pitch at a minimum. The tried and tested experienced mercenary model failed, it needs to be completely abandoned now and game time given to these young players that were brought in. If we don’t see that and get more of the same mediocre results then Edu and Arteta need to be shown the door, and rather quickly.


“We don’t want to use any excuses” – *Lists all excuses*


Yup, Mikel Arteta in a nutshell right there. That is pretty much every interview after a loss.


This is the best politician trick. You name the arguments against you, as if you take them into consideration and you have a response to them and then your counter arguments never fail to sound smart…


A bad workman blames his tools and he did inherit dome real tools. Now we will find out if he can work with his shiny new tools or if he is the tool


Tool ittle tool ate I’m afraid.


He always talks a good game


What am I getting downvoted for? 😂 you arteta fanboys are ridiculous. He’s been crap. I hope he gets better but facts are facts.


It’s the midweek optimists, and after a two week layoff they’re surely full to the brim of confidence how Mikel is about to end our EPL title drought with a run of form for the ages.


I can’t imagine there are many Arteta fanboys, more likely is the realisation it’s not him to blame for how the club is in the state it’s in. Similarly it wasn’t Emery’s or Wengers fault either


It’s the owners that just spent £150m? The managers take no blame. Have a day off 😂


Who employed the admin and coaching staff? Who pushed us into ESL? Who knows nothing about European and British football? Starts at the top. Take a day off sounds like a pretty solid Kroenke approach.

Bossman Bill

Downvoted because you asked why you got downvoted.

Only posts that get more downvotes are those hypothetical team selection posts.

That’s just the way it is bro.


Just checking. In terms of etiquette how does one seek feedback? For instance read one way: “He always talks a good game” is a statement of fact and could be viewed as a positive: e.g. “He always talks a good game”…and from that we draw inspiration. Alternatively, it could be expressed as a negative: e.g. “He always talks a good game”…but he never delivers (“never”, “rarely” – you take my point). The post received down votes and up votes but there could have been different permutations according to the understanding of the meaning. Someone who thinks he never delivers (and… Read more »


Don’t worry about it.

The downvotes don’t mean dick.

Posts that are perceived as positive tend to get more upvotes and fewer downvotes than those that are perceived as negative (the opposite applies after a poor performance).

If you care about the votes, you need to post negative things after bad results and positive things between Wednesday and the start of the next game.

Consistent opinions will get different responses on different days of the week.

Disarmed Gunner

He has the charisma of a potato.


When we get a decent manager in, I would be happy if the club offers him a job in the PR department.


Say what you want about Arteta (and I still think he’s not up to the challenge), but this is a pretty strong admission that it’s all on him now. I hope he succeeds, but after the City match, I don’t have much faith in him


to be fair to him he has always fronted up. yes, he has thrown his toys out of the pram a couple of times but he made it clear to the board what we had was not good enough and he got his way in the end. for a guy who has never been number 1 *anywhere* before i think that is kinda impressive. as he says himself now, pressure is on and the results will have to come quickly. i hope he succeeds.


What is a success anymore?
If we end up 4th?
If we end up 6th?
If we manage to win?
If he is offered another season?


One day Arteta is going to say ‘if you ignore the matches we lost or drawn, we are actually very good.’


Tbf, didn’t Edu basically say that last season during the relegation-level form run? “If only you could see them in training!”


He was close, with the comment about starting really well against City.


I can see you’ve successfully suppressed the infamous “win percentages” interview.

Merlin’s Panini

Saw elsewhere that Arteta was asked about Wilshere training with us again. He said the door is open.
I still can’t help but want Wilshere to come back to train with us, miraculously recover his old spark and give us the years he was robbed of. It’s easy to forget just how good he was but it seems that ship has sailed.


Unfortunately that ship sunk before it even sailed. But yes he was robbed of being a great player


Is he willing to be a backup midfielder?
if so just come back jack and maybe try doing your coaching badges? He has a developmental program round here ‘NFC Elites’ could be a path for him.

Viju Jacob

For all my critiques of Arteta, that was classy from him, welcoming Jack. We all know Jack had the talent but not the health, and him being on the training ground can only help the lads, especially ESR & MO. Bring him on board Mikel.

Viju Jacob

Some cuntwaffles are down voting a perfectly “Arsenal family” comment? What are twats made of?


“We have the tools” Yes we do Mikel and one of them you played at centre back last week even though he is, at best, a mediocre left back!


comment of the day winner right here…lol!!!


After loaning out another more useful tool to France

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Let the 10 game winning run begin

Reiss Neverseen vs DicTetaBall

“We don’t want to use any excuses, we know how difficult the start was with injuries, a lot of covid issues we had and the extremely difficult games that we had.”


You can’t make this up. This guy is going to be waxing lyrical until his time here is up. I’m sure deep down he knows he won’t be getting a gig this good anytime soon.


He’s full of it.

As our league position testifies.


Exactly. And the eternal optimists lap it up greedily.
Arteta is going to have to arrange more friendlies with championship U21 sides to satisfy them.


It’s almost like that’s the level he should be coaching at.


Yeah OK… we should be beating fellow relegation strugglers Norwich at very least Blunt tools. Midfield looks lightweight. We should have spent some of the money we wasted on White and got Neves which would have backed up Xhaka and Partey I would have kept Willock or if we sold him for 20m, why then spend on Sambi for 18m and net only 2m. Instead Arteta can’t seem to work Guendouzi. Had he been able to cycle him back in, we would have the added 20m to put into Neves. UP top, we should have gone for Odsonne Edouard. 3… Read more »


Agree apart from Odegaard. He’s quality and we’re lucky to have him.


Arteta is a poor man manager. He simply can’t get the best out of talented players. It does not matter who we put into that defense, there will be issues. A number of decent tools he had have not been used. Even Bellerin arguably has not met his potential in part due to himself but its also incumbent on the manager. Torreira, Sokratis before. Then the outlay on Saliba for nothing, and Guendouzi admittedly recalcitrant but someone he should be able to manage. As I mentioned before, one thing to come up with clever little theories under Pep’s skirt another… Read more »


I don’t believe Pep and Mikel are so much different.

The difference is that at their first gig, the one was given Messi & Co and the other Kola & co.


They certainly are a bunch of tools


Not under any illusion that there is going to be an immediate turnaround, but at this point would just be happy to start to show some steady improvement and start scoring some goals.


Or A goal.

Man Manny

The nature of our capitulation at Etihad was the last nail on the Arteta coffin for me. I get the injury and covid issues, but I don’t think that is a good enough excuse for the tepid show. It was down to poor set-up, poor choice of players and a crass inability to rally the troops. The worst moment for me was when Pep made excuses for him! I have tried to revive my faith in Arteta, but something tells me more frustration and heartache await. I hope not. At this point, all I want is Arsenal to do well;… Read more »

V h

Honestly would love to Saliba and Guendouzi available for selection. Loaning them was a mistake and given our current options… I’d feel way more secure and supportive of the “process” with them around.

I just don’t see a world where we are better off with Chambers and Mari than with Saliba. Same with an extremely thin midfield with only one clear starter in Partey. I like our new Belgian lad… but he needs time to grow.


Winning? Have to look that up.


We will 3 0 and all get our cocks out and swing them round for a bit. Till Burnley tear us a new one.

Disarmed Gunner

“We make no excuses” proceeds to make excuses. And I thought listening to Emery and his incoherent ramblings was bad. Arteta is worse. Everyone knows an Arteta. He is the guy at work who views himself as highly competent but is always getting chewed out by the boss. Lack of self reflection means it’s always an outside force to blame when results don’t get achieved. Until Arteta learns to leave his ego at the door and start looking inward he will never cut it as a manager. Confidence is one thing but this guy long ago crossed over to the… Read more »


Getting getting on hearing all these.
Now is the time to walk the talk



Vassili Zaitsev

I mean it is as simple as it gets. Play Auba as a striker and we finish in the top 8. Stop playing a world class finisher in the wings !


For somebody who came in talking about “non-negotiables”, he sure spends a lot of time coming up with excuses for why we haven’t performed to even the minimum level that should be expected of a professional football club. The “Brentford was really motivated” excuse galls in particular. Well, yeah – isn’t it your fucking job to make sure YOUR players are motivated? See, Aubameyang being stuck in a traffic jam was a much better excuse than “The other team wanted to win the game – nothing we could do, really,” – and that wasn’t good enough for Mikel. Missing some… Read more »

Share article

Featured on NewsNow

Support Arseblog

Latest posts

Latest Arsecast

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x