The crux of Mikel Arteta’s pre match interview was that he’s responsible for the results, he doesn’t read the newspapers or social media and the younger players are taking on more responsibility than they perhaps should be.
I don’t blame him for not reading the sports pages and social media as it’s full of comments from people who’ve never stepped foot into football management yet think they have the solutions to Arsenal’s woes. Comments about who ‘should’ have played after we’ve lost is easy. Hindsight is easy. Of course we all have our opinions, I know I have mine which is simple, drop the underperforming players, but I’ve no idea if the alternative options would resolve anything really.
Changing manager is similar really because who honestly knows if the next guy will do any better, if there is a next guy anytime soon. Who is there out there ready to drop everything he’s doing at his current club, in order to take on such a big job at Arsenal? We Arsenal fans think our club is an attractive proposition but perhaps sometimes we need to remove our Arsenal tinted spectacles and accept that we’re a club which has been in decline for ten years or more. I lean towards the more.
Arsenal aren’t entirely in this mess because of the owners, the current board members or Mikel Arteta, they are in this mess because of the pettiness which resulted in David Dein leaving and Arsene Wenger taking the reigns. From that day on, the club has regressed in my opinion. Had Paul Donovan been appointed Dein’s successor instead of Ivan Gazidis, well, who knows.
However, that doesn’t mean mistakes have to continue. As suggested the other day, Arsenal, and by that I mean the board/owners, either start all over again with a new regime or those who are in place now recognise their mistakes and learn from them. Making sure never to repeat them.
Perhaps for Mikel that means ignoring the critics of what was a winning formula, for Edu, stop signing and renewing contracts of older players unless it’s like the one Arsene Wenger and Dennis Bergkamp agreed. Edu was part of the Invincible squad, does anyone honestly believe he doesn’t regret Willian being given a three year deal? Or Luiz an extra year, or Aubameyang a contract extension? Hindsight eh. It’s a wonderful thing.
For now at least, Mikel Arteta is going nowhere and the players have to accept that and get on with what they’re paid to do, just like you and I have to in the workplace and if we don’t like our boss, we find another job.
I think tonight’s match against Man City will be interesting, especially if Mikel Arteta selects a younger team. With Chelsea up next on Boxing Day, I suspect he will. If that younger/second string team go out and play without fear, play with energy, discipline and purpose, then regardless of the result, I think we’ll learn a lot about where Arsenal’s problems lie.
Because if they can turn up and play…..
See you in the comments.