Sunday, July 14, 2024

Arteta planning to keep faith with the kids

Arsenal may have fluffed their lines in the last couple of games but Mikel Arteta insists the club will continue to put faith in young players.

I was going to use this second paragraph to drop in some statistics that would back up how often we’ve been the youngest team on the pitch but with every word I type I can feel my hangover worsening and the screen suddenly looks piercingly bright.


Anyway, here’s the boss saying nice words about the kids who, for large parts of the season, have carried us to some big wins.

“Next season they are going to be more mature,” he said.

“What we cannot say is that we are going to use academy players and do that and the moment something goes a little bit wrong, we’re not going to do anything with them.

“I’m so grateful for what they have done and what they have brought to the team, and to the club, in this moment. We are going to stick with them and give them what they need because they deserve that.”

That doesn’t mean we won’t be looking for experience in the transfer market.

“It is all about the balance,” he said when asked about his squad building plans.

“Now we have cleared the deck and now we have a squad balance that is much more like what we want and much more affordable than what we had before.

“Now we have to start to add the top-quality pieces that they are not necessarily at 18, 19 or 20-years-old.

“We will do what it takes to get better in every department. Not only the age group but in terms of the quality, in terms of the leadership, in terms of the goal threat of this team, in terms of the physicality of the team that we need to improve as well so there are a lot of areas.”

Three years ago when we bollixed up our last real shot of qualifying for the Champions League – the instantly forgettable Europa League final against Chelsea – the players seemed unable to shake off the disappointment and played like drunk rag dolls until Unai Emery was sacked six months later.

The boss isn’t expecting a repeat. For one, he thinks the latest crop of players have more about them.

“I don’t think it will [happen again],” Arteta said. “I think as well, that squad was very, very different to the squad we have now in many senses.”

That’s not to say there won’t be some form of a hangover (very much the word of the day for me) if we end up settling for fifth.

“It will be [a missed opportunity] for sure because we were there and mathematically it was possible and in our hands. That feeling could be there if it happens and it will take some time to take away that – but that’s part of football.

“You cannot take notice of what happened a week or two weeks ago whether it was positive or negative because it is not going to have an impact on anything.”

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Zadok the Regular Priest

This season is unquestionably an opportunity missed, no doubt about that. But I’m more annoyed about it in a sense of “damn, we could have done it” than “damn, we should have done it”. Everyone’s been acting all season like Spurs are some plucky underdog just because they’ve been so dire in so many games and had such a poor start, but realistically with the players and experience they have it really felt like they should have been doing better than they were. In Conte’s system world-class defenders are hardly a must given how protected they are. He’s just tightened… Read more »


I’m not a fan of the manager but his biggest fault aside not reinforcing in the January window is his apparent inability to motivate his players. If you cannot motivate against your biggest rivals with so much at stake then you have no business being at Arsenal FC. It was in their hands and they blew it. Not through poor luck, dodgy decisions or injuries – things you can understand but because they looked at the way the Spuds and Newcastle approached it and decided they just couldn’t be arsed with it. And that is the responsibility of the “manager”.… Read more »


Well, there you have it, a perfect example of short term thinking with no appreciation of the bigger picture whatsoever, hilariously you even mention the three things that actually did go against the team on the run in and still manage to reach some dubious conclusions, the sense of entitlement can be hard to take at times with some “fans”.


Not to mention the red cards. Playing so much gametime with 10 men is very hard. Apart from some debatable decisions it is on the manager, who must control the players.


totally agree


Yup, feels disappointing because of what it nearly was, but pragmatically it’s decent progress. You can see what Arteta wants from the team, and they’ve delivered sporadically, but enough to suggest that with a few well chosen additions and a bit more experience, this combination of team and manager could well succeed. We’re clearly not there yet but if old Stanley deep pockets chucks a couple of hundred mil at it, we should certainly have enough to become a nailed on top four team again. Whether we can progress from there or not remains to be seen. What would you… Read more »


A until Partey was injured, C since then.

Essex Gooner

Partey was shockingly awful in his last game(Crystal Palace,to be fair he wasn’t the only one that night)
I think we’ve missed Tierney (leadership qualities)
We need consistency going forward,TP has had good games,but come on he’s a senior player.Must do better.
Come on Norwich !!

Nacho de Montreal is tasty

Young players impress but don’t win you anything. They can’t manage games let alone seasons.
Plus, the english ones have a high risk of suffering from the arrested development syndrome (e g. Rashord, Sancho, Delle Alli and many others).

Zadok the Regular Priest

This is recency bias. They’ve managed plenty of games very well this season, far better than our more experienced teams of the past. Plus the thing about young players is they gradually get older.

Spanish Gooner

The thing is, when Conte arrived he was only 2 points behind Arteta. For all Spurs’ poor start, Son bailed them out time and again to the point that they only needed to look competent for a couple of months to be right back in the driving seat. Correct me if I’m wrong, but the only game we won this season that we weren’t definitely the best team was West Ham thanks to two set-piece goals, and arguably Wolves (Martinelli’s corrupt red and THE Lacazette goal). If we can find a way to win some of the 50/50 games we’ll… Read more »


Since Partey was injured we have conceded a lot more goals and lost points we shouldn’t have done, especially against Southampton. Three points would have probably got us into the CL. Hence we need more strength in midfield as well as someone upfront who can score regularly.


What you say is true, but it’s a fragile system that relies on one player to be everything in a one man midfield. That is not sustainable even if it was Vieira in his pomp.

It will be more of the same unless he gets some quality help there.

Group Captain Mandrake

It’s more than just Partey. Tierney and Tomi have been basically out for months and White has been injured too. Cedric and Nuno as starters together is not a recipe for success.


While I think he’d have helped over the last few weeks, he was on the pitch vs Palace and if I had to give one main reason for us not getting top 4, it’s simply that the young squad couldn’t handle the pressure.

Every time it looked like we were the favorites or in games where we were in a position to really cement the place, we choked.


Aurellian n nunuz

Martinchaser Of Lost Courses

It’s “top quality pieces” for me along everything MA said. Hope he matches his words with actions early enough for a strong pre-season as much as the FWC can allow. Top 4 has to be the barest minimum next season.

Martinchaser Of Lost Courses


So No-Go.

Someone somewhere has a hangover. And we all need to know about it.


Worse? He didn’t bring enough for everyone.


15:21 and yet no team selection post…. Gosh Blogs, this one smells like the ultimate hangover😅 Take care


Just realized / remember that there will be no liveblog as Blogs will be at the Emirates… Enjoy the game, COYG (& Pukki)!!!


he can keep using the kid’s excuse for years to conr

Naked Cygan

🙏🙏🙏 come on Norwich!!


We need a 20+ goal reliable ST/CF there is no way around it with a decent back up. Saka, Martinelli, ESR and Ødegaard cannot carry the team with their goals for the whole season. We need to cut out deadwood and develop Nuno and Lokonga and find suitable coverage for Tomiyasu and Tomas.


No top 4 with no European football, next year playing on a Thursday = no chance,
Fake-teta will be gone by Christmas and good riddance,
Perhaps next time we will pick a manger who has managed before = seems a sensible criteria to me.


I mostly agree with him
up until the last point. How he coming out saying that what we done a week or two weeks ago is not having on impact on anything?? 🤦🏾‍♂️ Surely its impacted everything?! From fans to potential signings to players morale etc…or am i reading it wrong? I hope so, cuz that’s a dumbass thing to say man


Look at Arsen’s Project Youth! It was a “failure” with the guaranteed top 4. But what a successful manager Arteta is…


Saliba will play for Arsenal next year unless we can sell him for over £50m. Only thing that seems certain tonight is that he won’t play again for Marseilles

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