Thursday, December 2, 2021

“I see things differently” – Arteta reflects on his evolution as a coach

Sunday’s clash with Watford will be Mikel Arteta’s 100th as manager of Arsenal.

It’s fair to say it’s been a roller coaster 23 months in the dugout. Steadying the ship in the aftermath of Unai Emery’s departure, there was a success in the FA Cup and high expectations that last season would see us close the gap on the top four.

Against the backdrop of the pandemic, things did not go to plan and by Christmas, serious questions were being asked about the Spaniard’s credentials for the job at hand. He weathered the storm and despite missing out on Europe was given the full backing to continue his restructuring of the first team squad into the current campaign.

Again, it’s not been plain sailing although the green shoots of optimism are now starting to bud. Weirdly, for all the ups and downs, only George Graham has a better winning record after a century of games as Arsenal manager. Make of that what you will.

Asked to sum up his time in charge, Arteta said: “An incredible and big journey! A lot has happened, not only at the football club but around the world.

“That obviously has had a huge impact in everything that we have lived in the last two years. But I am so privileged to be where I am and I am really enjoying the opportunity and the challenge that we have ahead.

“I think we all update any year like any computer. With everything that has happened to us, even more so.

“I am different (from my first game in charge), I see things differently, you evolve in certain ways, you learn a lot of things. We keep evolving.”

Having paid homage to Middlesbrough boss Neil Warnock for taking charge of a record-breaking 1,602nd match in professional football and to former gaffer David Moyes for surpassing his 1,000th, Arteta was asked if he envisages staying in management long enough to achieve such feats.

“I am nowhere near, I would like to have their recipe to see how they’ve done it to stay in the game for so long,” he said.

“I know David, the enjoyment and the passion that he still has for the game, because I worked with him.

“To have experience in something doesn’t mean that you’ve experienced all things that could happen in that journey, but for sure there have been some necessary things that have happened, some challenges and others beautiful to go through, but as I said, I’m really enjoying the moment and the opportunity that I have ahead of me.”

He also joked that to still be in the hot seat at 70, like Sunday’s opponent Claudio Ranieri, must require incredible support behind the scenes.

Arteta said: “It’s very interesting to understand what happened in their families – because I think they would have to have outstanding wives, kids and family around them to be able to do that for such a long time.

“But for (David Moyes) I am extremely happy for him, because I know him and I admire him personally. It’s great I think for British football to have these managers.”

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Jeremy DG

Keep evolving mate. You are the youngest coach in the league and one of our own. I want you to work so much and I’ll support you when you inevitably make mistakes. Ignore the idiot pundits and reactive fans calling for your head every time we drop points. You will never be above constructive criticism but the majority are realistic about where we are, where we were when you took over in horrid circumstances and are behind you on what hopefully will be a long and fruitful journey.

Post January Blip

Well said mate. My initial thoughts when Mikel took over was that he was going to be a good coach but just needed the right players in his system.

Not gonna lie though, I was really beginning to lose hope and wasn’t expecting anything approaching a good finish this season. The football was generally dire too.

I still think it’s too early to say that we’ve turned a corner, but I have to say I’m really on board with supporting the team and getting behind the manager again.

Johnny 4 Hats

The thing about Arteta is that he evolves, but he doesn’t…. revolve. I guess what I’m saying is we don’t want another Chris Evans on our hands.

Des Lynam

Give him another season ya shit!


Yeah, despite having had faith in Mikel since the beginning, I was slowly starting to lose hope over our way of playing – more than our results – in the last few months. But the last 4-5 games have been hugely encouraging, not only results-wise, but also in the attitude and style of play. So I’m almost fully back on board now, really hoping we can achieve something this season.


Apart from Leicester we haven’t played anyone we shouldn’t expect to take 3 points.. not that we did either, big test to see how far we are v scousers


More of this…please


RE: “reactive fans” There are some of us who had been critical of the crap football we played all of last season and up until pretty much the Villa game and whose moods didn’t magically imorove when we beat Norwich, Burnley, and a team so shit they’ve fired their manager already. That’s the opposite of reactive, that’s consistent. I’m obviously very happy about the way the team has been playing recently, but it would be a little premature to think Arteta has figured everything out now. Ultimately, his teams were bad for much longer then they’ve been good – and… Read more »


It’s a real shame that your mood doesn’t magically improve when we win a match, but it does provide context for your running commentary.

Reiss Neverseen & the DicTeta

Jeremy, you’ve literally done the same thing you’re labelling people idiots and reactive fans for. What gives?😕


We are seeing steps forward this season, keep going in the same direction and he has the chance of being a great manager

C.B. gives the numer of wins for Arsenal managers with 100 matches under the belt. Arteta is second on the list, above Wenger, though Wenger had tougher CL matches included.


And Wenger had more draws, so more points overall.


Quite good company to be in. All the more so considering the state of Wenger’s squad for his first 100 vs the state of Mikel’s.

Let’s hope the upward trend continues!


Going by wins is deceptive. Total points would be a better metric. Or trophies… or top four finishes… or total seasons in Europe.
Quite meaningless stat.

The Beast

Cuts both ways I think. No one (rightfully) was claiming Arteta was an undisputed success after winning the FA cup just after about 5 months in charge and likewise those that claimed Wenger was unambitious & a failure because he went through a trophy drought whilst consistently finishing top 4 were also being dismissive of how hard that achievement is. Total points maybe is a better metric but you also may get the criticism that those points may not have led to any real measure of success/progress. Either way, based on some of the criticism he gets, I think it’s… Read more »

Reiss Neverseen & The DicTeta

Arteta’s first 99 games:

Played – 99 | Won – 55 | Drawn – 18 | Lost – 26
Points Total – 183

Wengers’s first 100 games:
Played – 100 | Won – 53 | Drawn – 28 | Lost – 19
Points total – 187

33 points out of Arteta’s 183 total are from European Competition. Meanwhile 6 points out of Wenger’s 187 total are from European Competition.

Europa League stat-padding to the finest degree.


Or games played with more than one key starter missing, during a worldwide pandemic, without fans. Actually, for a 3+ year period our fans have bordered on being detrimental to our club. Covid may have actually saved Artetas career at Arsenal.


Or just the change in landscape. Billionaire club owners are a common thing now in the league. Even in Wenger’s early years, you wouldn’t find the best players and managers across the world almost all in the EPL.


Wow, ‘only George Graham has a better win record over 100 games’?! This is an eye-opening stat. Funny how the social media hyperbole overlook information like this when calling for someone’s head.

Reiss Neverseen & The DicTeta

Ah yes, the record low number of goals, the many months of crab football, the back to back 8th placed finishes don’t matter. It’s the arbitrary stat table that has no impact whatsoever that matters😀. Just like last season’s “since Christmas table” I suppose. Let us breakdown these 99 games. (Mikel Arteta) Premier League: Played – 68 | Won – 32 | Drawn – 15 | Lost – 21 Goals for – 99 | Goals against – 73 Win Percentage – 47.1% Europa League: Played – 16 | Won – 10 | Drawn – 3 | Lost – 3 Goals… Read more »

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

I was just thinking Arteta’s overall record isn’t bad at all. Then I saw your post breaking down each tournament.
That Premier League record doesn’t look nice at all.
I’m fully behing Arteta though. Nobody could really do much with the squad he had

Pete Plum

I think many could have done better with that squad and we’ve stuck with him because we’re betting on his potential, and because thats what we committed to do. Hopefully its coming together now


For many many reasons, comparing Arteta and Wenger is ridiculous, please stop.

Reiss Neverseen & the DicTeta

In what way is it so? Will you also be relaying this to the Opta employee who compiled the table?


Man, look at those FA Cup and Community Shield numbers — this Arteta fellow is quite the closer, indeed.

Frank Bascombe

Seek therapy.

Reiss Neverseen & The DicTeta

*** Correction. Arteta’s total stands at: Played – 99 | Won – 55 | Drawn – 18 | Lost – 26 Points Total – 183 21 out of 55 wins (38.2%) have come in the cup competitions. Meanwhile 21 out of the 26 defeats (80.7%) have come in the Premier League. Also I believe that table has some wrong dates, it’s not possible that Wenger’s 100th game could have been the 0-0 against Chelsea on September 9th 1998. The record books say that was his 88th game in charge. He managed 32 matches in 96/97 and 51 matches in 97/98. The Chelsea game… Read more »


Your stat doesn’t say if they’ve managed any club before.


While Arteta is going through a fine patch,
– and I hope it continues – trying to insinuate that he is a great manager based on that titbit than is pure fallacy.

The Beast

Was happy that the club was willing to put their faith in potential rather than getting involved in the usual managerial merry go round and I’m still happy with that decision despite the inevitable growing pains.

Feels like we’re coming out the other end of a complete squad overhaul that probably started in earnest with Emery and we’re finally starting to see the possibilities of this team. Long may it continue.


I must say that I experienced a certain amount of schadenfreude when Ancelotti left Everton, leaving James Rodriguez behind for Everton to deal with. People were saying that we should have gone for him instead of Arteta, and while I wasn’t sure he’d be the one to steady the sinking ship that was Arsenal at the time, there were moments after our appointment had been made when I thought we should have gone for Carlo instead. No longer though. Really hope we can win the last game before the break and keep up the momentum!


Cant say I’ve been totally happy with what i’ve seen, over the past couple of years, but I am happy we are at least trying a different route to…say Sp*rs, where by, we might have a chance of recreating a new personal identity rather than begging a manager to create it for us.
Keep going Mikel! I have my fingers crossed.


We pay him £5m a year, he has no ego, we are moving in the right direction……time to realise & appreciate what we’ve got. Is it even time to say the Kroenkes are starting to do a good job?

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