Arsenal fans can’t judge Arteta on this strangest of seasons…

It isn’t just Arteta who’s struggling in the league 

by ThirdManJW

As I write this, Arsenal currently reside way down in 9th position. Under normal circumstances, that would be wholly unacceptable, but’s what’s been normal of late? Not only has our club been going through a huge restructuring, and transitional process, it’s also been a completely bonkers league season.
Many of you keep thinking I am an Arteta fanboy because I keep defending him, but that’s only because I like to look at the situation in context. Regardless of any situation though, EVERY manager at some point needs to be judged on results. I just think it’s still too early to fully judge Arteta given what he inherited, the fact it was as recent as 2 months ago he only finally managed to offload a huge chunk of deadwood that were causing problems, and that he’s only had one main transfer window.
So, although I think Arteta needs more time, I do also think he has earned it. Yes, our league form hasn’t been great, but it isn’t reflective of the progress that we have made thus far. Under Emery it was dead, there was nothing positive in keeping him, whereas Arteta has been winning trophies, massive improvement against the top sides, much better defending, strong discipline, and huge improvement in our mentality. Post Xmas our attack has also massively improved as well, and it’s actually our poor finishing that’s costing us, more than anything. There are enough positives there for us to see what Arteta could do with a bit more time, and more of his own players.
I have already written enough articles already on our progress under Arteta within context, but another area where I feel “context” is needed, is this bizarre league season. Government restrictions have affected all managers, but more so for inexperienced managers. Managers like Arteta haven’t even experienced a normal pre-season yet, whereas the likes of Klopp, Mourinho, Pep, etc. have had years to hone their tactics, style, player management, pre-season scheduling, etc. Whilst I do not like looking at other club’s struggles, as if deflecting from our own, one surely has to accept that this is a strange season as well, and maybe we can cut Arteta a little slack because of it? It’s easy enough to say we’re in 9th with 11 defeats, sack Arteta, but how are other clubs faring?
Liverpool are only two places, and 4 points above us in 7th, with 9 defeats, and they’re the current league champions! They haven’t won a home league game since 16th December, a horrific home run which includes 6 straight defeats, and one league goal in their last 7 home games! Klopp is a far more experienced manager, with a squad that is almost entirely made up of his signings, but are badly struggling.
Spurs are three places, and 6 points ahead of us, also with 9 defeats. Mourinho is a serial winner, of mass experience, but boy are Spurs struggling as well, and not just domestically, after crashing out of Europe to an inferior team as well. Not so easy coming back from 3 nil down, even when you only need one goal!
What’s going on at West Ham as well? Moyes has done nothing for years, West Ham as a club along with their fans is always a very unstable relationship, yet out of nowhere, they have got a great shout of Champions League football next season. It’s insane that after 29 games they are only 2 points off 4th, and 8 points off second.
Yet another baffling tale is Sheff Utd. They took the Premier League by storm last season, yet this season, they haven’t just been bad, but absolutely woeful! It’s like two completely different clubs comparing this and last season.
Even Villa, to some degree, have surprised everyone. Almost relegated last season, yet doing so well this campaign, and if it wasn’t for Grealish’s recent lay-off, they would be even higher in the table.
One has to acknowledge that this has been an overly tough, and strange season for even the best of managers, let alone a novice like Arteta, who also inherited an absolute mess of a club. There will come a time when we will need to fully judge Arteta on results, but it’s not quite time yet, and his detractors need start accepting some kind of context, in the short-term at the very least. This is the strangest of seasons!


  1. Arteta’s detractors need to think about Arsenal’s financial situation and the high cost that they have to pay if they sack Arteta in this season. It’ll be much cheaper to sack him in December, if he can’t show any progress

    If Arsenal can save money by not sacking Arteta, they would be able to buy popular players like Odegaard in the summer. Besides, Arteta has made us stronger against big oppositions, similar to Klopp’s first season

    We’re also still in EL, so we shouldn’t discourage the manager and the players in this crucial phase by making unconstructive comments. Hold your protests until we get kicked out from EL

  2. I see a pattern starting to appear with the bigging up of Arteta ,it seems to be the fans that had a massive wide on for Wenger to be sacked ,now it seems they will talk absolute bollocks just to have been proving right .
    I was all for Wenger going but bloody hell the excuses now coming out for Arteta are starting to get really cringe ,yes he did well last season but this season as been a complete disaster .
    I would suggest Thirdman you don’t let that Wenger hatred cloud your judgment ,we already seen one idiot on here backing Emery up only to make himself look rather foolish ,would hate for you to go the same way as that TOOL .

    1. That pattern was there all along it just didn’t cross your mind.

      The West Ham excuse that we praise Arteta for the 60 minutes we played better while ignoring the first 35 makes sense that I can’t find a cake because it has taken all of them.

      1. Says the arteta hater that ignores the positive 60 min but keep whining about that horrendous 30min because it suits your agenda.

        1. Thank you for being an example of my point. Football is 90 minutes you don’t choose a part of the game to praise the manager. If only the 60 minutes are counted why haven’t they erased West Ham goals.

          Lets put it this way. My agenda is 35 minutes and your agenda is 60 minutes. There, we have all agendas. At least my agenda is supported by the table. What support your agenda? Wishful thinking?

          1. I have no agenda unlike people like you full of whining and negativity. I see both the good things and the bad bad things, you just ignore what doesn’t suit your agenda.

        2. Spot on! There’s many reasons why we have become a mediocre team, if we need to blame someone we should start with the main reasons. Arteta is trying to rebuild us, but it will take time. All the internal and external obstacles since December 2019 hasn’t been beneficial to him, it has made a complicated task even more complicated. I don’t say that he has done everything right, but I’m just willing to give him reasonable time to do his work. Due to the pandemic and lack of preseason preparations that means another year.

  3. Arsenal won’t be judged in comparison to Liverpool. There’s 29 points difference between the log leaders and Arsenal. That says a lot about Arteta. He inherited a team that had spent £100million on players the previous season. Arteta has bought Partey, Mari, Soares, Gabriel, Willian, and Runasson and still there’s no improvement in team. When Arsene Wenger arrived, Arsenal finished 12th in the previous season. But during his first season, he took Arsenal to top 4. Those are just excuses to protect your beloved Arteta. Arsenal needs to find a better manager as soon as possible

    1. When Wenger arrived he took over a club that finished FIFTH (I seem to recall) and were in the UEFA Cup.

    2. One thing I’ll like you all to understand is that Arteta is not going anywhere. Arsenal is not ready to invest in a good coach and a good team, but I will say this, arteta’s trying his best and if we don’t do our bit and be considerate, we’ll be singing the sane tune every time Wenger was arsenal’s best coach as far as I’m concerned but even he was criticized, it was painful because he had to make a lot of difficult choices• Arteta’s going to need time and if we don’t give that to him we’re not going anywhere • I ask everyone to have a little faith in him and our players

  4. For the other clubs and managers you only pick the negatives and ignore the excuses but for arteta you only pick the positives and the excuses but ignore all the negatives.. well with such biased comparison, arteta will surely seem as the second best in the league but we all know thats not true 😉

  5. Picking players when they constantly keep making the same basic errors in all games, of course as fans we can judge Arteta, his negative, dreary football of passing back all the time, his lack of naïve tactics in games, his team selection, I have not seen any improvement. He is a novice just like Edu and they are taking the club backwards, where is Arsenal’s DNA of attacking free flowing football that entertained us for years, that has gone, now it is a drip drab style that frustrates a lot of fans. Arteta should be grateful for this lockdown as the fans would not have stood for this negative football

  6. @TMJW- you are always very quick to highlight the deadwood Arteta got rid of in January. But other than a couple of appearances by Mustafi these players did not feature this season so annoy be held responsible for the position Arteta had overseen so far.
    But, I do accept the majority of what you write, believe this or not. I also believe we just “could” have a very good manager on our hands. But for me, he is making far too many mistakes and not learning from them.
    We will just have to wait and see how much time he gets. But I believe he needs a very big end to this season to justify overseeing what is turning out to be our most under- performing season in decades with a squad of players that should have nailed a top 6 position at the very least

    1. Some of them wasn’t only deadwood but conflict makers. To get rid of them was a good decision for the atmosphere inside the club and our wage bill.

  7. You are dismissive of Emery but back Arteta. In Emery’s first season, with 7 games to play, Arsenal were 3rd in the league and in a European final. After that it started to go pear shaped defensively but overall his points per game record (88 from 51) was far better than Arteta’s (75 from 49). Not a realistic comparison IMO.

    1. I’m only dismissive of Emery’s second season. I have always felt he overachieved in his first season, especially when you consider the injuries as well.

      But it’s an interesting comparison though. Emery out performed Arteta in the league, but won nothing, and look how quickly it all fell apart. It proves my point that we shouldn’t be putting so much stock in league in the short term, and especially during this strange season.

  8. Yes…
    There are many cases this that you can use to defend arteta..
    I am not saying he should be sacked yet but it’s becoming boring when talking about arsenal this season we tend to look around us looking for a reason to justify this nearly pathetic season
    How many big clubs are struggling par liverpool
    And this is certainly not the first time reigning champions are struggling in defense of their title
    This season is this, this season is that as if Bayern,real Madrid,Juventus,Barcelona,man city,PSG etc are all languishing in mid table….
    Please make a more valid case because this whole excuse is becoming boring the whole world is in this together everyone adopted and moved on…

  9. The article is a load of shit.

    I see no improvement….we play shit. The league table reflects how poor we have been coached by micro manager Artetshet.

    1. So the football was better under Emery? Conceding 20+ shots on goal almost every game, and winning nothing was better? As a sane person, I would disagree with that!

        1. Well if having your goal battered by almost every team is 10x better, then I cannot even respond to that insane comment. It defies logic!

          1. TMJW, everyone has right to their opinions and the fact that JP has a different view on Arteta doesn’t make yours right and his wrong. What I find annoying is calling his comment ‘insane’. Respect others view on issues while holding on and weighing yours.

          2. Awhy.. I’m amazed at the negativity on here right now…. very toxic. Some of the insults you’d expect to come from spuds, chavs you know the usual suspects, not from fellow gooners!!
            I honestly wonder if some on here are what they claim to be – Arsenal supporters, as nothing seems to please or satisfy them!!.
            Honestly, I’m not happy with where we are, but to argue and insult one another is really going to help 🙄

        2. Jay Patel, an interesting opinion why did he completely lose the dressing room, and it started early. Why did we sack him because he made us better and won titles or… The truth is that we didn’t train properly and in his second season the lack of basic training was obvious. He left us in relegation form and total chaos…

  10. I cannot believe this article, when should we judge him then…? His fourth season with us? Excuses after excuses… Millions spent, no particular type of football, No consistent gameplan, progress (if any) is extremely slower than snail, slow start, preferential treatment in line ups… If Arteta wasn’t an ex-player we’d have been begging for his sack a long time like we did with Emery.

    Fine the season is somehow, yes but the elite teams are still closer to the top, everyone of them would still get auto European places, every of those teams have picked up their shit and forged ahead except us… We were in 30+ points for almost 2 months.

    Pls don’t compare teams especially Liverpool who we know we’re hit hardest with injuries, Chelsea changed coaches and the honeymoon seems forever…United are just playing better, Nothing bout spurs coz it’s Mourinho, City were once behind us in 15th…

    So I don’t agree we cannot judge him still even for a freakishly unpredictable season of football, if joining midseason wasnt enough to judge then a full season is… That’s the truth.

    1. So Mourinho and Klopp have had more problems to deal with at their respective clubs than Arteta? Out of interest, where should we be then?

  11. If Arsenal was dead under Emery then statistically Arsenal is dead and buried under Arteta.
    This despite being very lucky so far
    In so many ways.
    Covid gave Arteta the chance to stop the rot in his first season by giving the new manager a bonus four months to work with his players.
    When the season restarted in empty stadiums the sting had gone out of the season so Liverpool and City for example were already on the beach when Arsenal played them.
    Arteta also got a fit Bellerin Mari and Tierney and has Gabriel Partey Willian and Odegaard at his disposal.
    He also was not required to use Ozil Socritis Mustafi Torreira or Kolasinac
    and has been allowed to loan Guendouzie Niles and Willock
    Now because of a lucky draw Arsenal could make the EL final without beating anyone of any consequence.
    So in reality Arteta has had a saloon passage yet is presently 9th with a top 4 squad.
    Arteta is studious, determined, professional and loyal to the bone so
    despite his underwhelming record is worth giving another season.

  12. I honestly get bored with articles like this, and especially written by TMJW. You accused me just the other day of taking things out of context, yet this whole article is exactly that. Have Leicester City struggled this season? Not that I answer. Aston Villa are over performing. Chelsea have shown that by replacing a failing manager the results are there with the right team selection and game plans. So a big thing you always spout is how we now allow fewer shots on target than we did under Emery and Wenger, which factually is correct. What you conveniently fail to acknowledge is that we create far far less under Arteta than the previous two managers, And Arteta was very very fortunate injuries forced him to play ESR in December otherwise I have no doubt he would not have been using him like he has done.
    I have never written an article on this site, but feel if I did I would certainly have a far more balanced view to submit than what you have written here. You get continually called out for your total one dimensional biased over Arteta and this is typified by what you have written here. Try watching some of the games PAL without your Arteta tinted lenses. Failing that just try watching the games

    1. You have proven time and again to know nothing of our games. Claiming we were better defensively under Wenger, and that Burnley destroyed us defensively. You have consistently got it wrong so many times, and that is why I question whether or not you actually watch Arsenal? Next you’ll be telling me that conceding 15 goals in just 3 games to Bayern, was a good defensive showing! Haha!

      1. That’s your problem PAL- you go so far off kilter when trying to justify the utter crap you spout. Why bring Wenger into this? It’s Arteta we are supposed to be talking about according to your headline. For the record we dropped FIVE POINTS to Burnley this season. Look at the whole sum of the parts and it tells you the complete picture, not just the bits you highlight. Anyone can cherry pick statistics to highlight a point. The reality is we are where we are in the league, scoring far fewer goals than we should be doing, and dropping far too many points to clubs we should be beating.That’s reality PAL.
        And just to finish, I have never missed a Champions League Away fixture whenever we have played in Germany, not just Munich.I was there for all the Bayern humiliations PAL. Wenger lost his job because he could not sustain momentum at the Club. Arteta is taking us backwards with no clear signs he has improved ANYTHING. Just how much longer is he to be given?

        1. Mate I didn’t bring Wenger into this debate, you did in a previous thread! Can’t even remember what you’re saying anymore! So in your opinion then, even though we have been going through a huge transitional phase, that should have zero impact on the results?

          And here you go with your lies again about how nothing has improved. Our results against the top 6 are even better than under Wenger, yet you lie and say it isn’t. You lie and say our defending was better under Emery! What are you smoking!

          Klopp took almost 4 years to deliver success, but Arteta barely gets a year and a half? Even though he’s already won a couple of trophies as well.

          Ok just answer this one question then. If this is a perfectly normal season, that cannot be used an excuse, then why on earth are Liverpool having a shocking season? Considering they are the league champions, Klopp is having a far worse season than Arteta, yet they are not transitioning.

          “Wenger lost his job because he could not sustain momentum at the Club.” Understatement of the century! 14 years straight of nothing in the league, 9 years straight without a trophy, and his last 7 years in Europe were utter humiliation. Wenger’s allowed all that time to fail, yet Arteta isn’t even allowed to complete a full season in your eyes. What a joke of a fan you are. Classic plastic fan demanding instant success!

          1. Lies about how nothing has improved?
            Eh PAL- where are we exactly in the league?
            What has the Liverpool situation for to do with Arsenal Football Club? Why is there bad season anything to do with ours? And why has Arteta not taken advantage of all these bad seasons?
            In regards results against the Top 6 I believe you will find it was predominately the AWAY fixtures we got so badly wrong.I believe our home form was pretty good against them.
            Plastic Fan? Yeah right PAL.You continually humiliate yourself giving us all a good laugh time and again.
            It’s when self titled experts like you resort to the Plastic Fan labels that show you up for exactly the hypocrite you are.
            Tell me this PAL- Arteta performed a near miracle last season in transforming a mis-firing squad into a pretty competitive and tight outfit that deservedly won an FA Cup and although the league results were inconsistent, there is no doubt he was on the right track and had all the fans on his side. So then PAL- where has it all gone wrong this year? We score less. We are defensively weak in so much as we continue to concede goals that are the result of schoolboy errors. We create fewer chances. We have no cohesive pattern of play. We are always so slow to start matches, often concede ing early goals that we never recover from. We continue to drop points against far lesser teams.
            You explain the progress you feel Arteta has made, and exactly why he should be given the time that firstly caught up on Wenger then was taken from Emery. I’m waiting you Mug

          2. In my view we were always going to struggle this season. A mid table finish and a decent run in a cup was always the most likely result. I believe our squad is weaker than the one Emery inherited and our position reflects that. Our fall down the table last season and this was easy to predict. Until we improve our buying and selling we will struggle to improve whoever the manager is. I would say we haven’t strengthened our squad in any summer transfer window for many years and very few winter windows. We have spent a lot of money but that doesn’t mean we have strengthened. £72m was way to much for Pepe and £45m on Partey hasn’t yet proved worth it. That’s £117m without yet improving the squad. We continue to spend big and sell at a huge loss or wait until we can give players away. If we continue in a similar vein this summer then the decline will continue.

          3. ‘Plastic fan, demanding instant success’….this is used an awful lot on here (when it suits) in defence of MA . yet those same ‘fans’ are willing to toss Auba in the trash over a 3 game drought. Pot, kettle, black!!!
            And we’re often told it’s the younger generation that don’t know the meaning of the word ‘patience’ laughable!!!

          4. Phil you are awful fan, and people like you shouldn’t be allowed to support a team, because you do not have ANY understanding of football in general and the situation at Arsenal.

            In your delusional head, Arteta inherited a club with ZERO problems, a fantastic squad of players, and that Arteta only gets around half a full season to deliver success!

            So what do we do then? Sack Arteta now, and if the next manager hasn’t got us in the top 4 by say next December, sack him as well? Sounds like a great plan! HAHAHA!

  13. About our defense
    When was the last time we kept a clean sheet?
    Please someone should remind me when last the second best defense in the league kept a clean sheet..

    1. TMJW- and of course YOU are a proper supporter I suppose because???????
      Yeah I’ve got it. Because you have a different opinion to me. As is stated in a later reply on this thread to Jon Fox, just count the number who agree with you against the number who disagree. As I said PAL- your a Mug

  14. Excuses continue to roll in for Arteta, a never ending river of “he’s not to blame” silliness. Remove a 20 year performance standard to justify his regression.

    How often did Arteta play the “Deadwood” Emery was forced to rely on? Emery finished 5th and Europa final with them, and sat in 8th when he got the boot.

    Yet somehow deadwood is an excuse for Arteta, how does it make sense?

    Arteta has brought in 6 new players, Cedric, Mari, Partey, Willian, Ceballos, Gabriel, since he took over. More than half a starting 11, yet performing worse than Emery or Wenger.

    Better than the “deadwood” Wenger & Emery had, yet somehow the “tactician” delivered worse results.

    Covid hit all clubs, yet Moyes & West Ham improved, Villa improved over last year, Leicester in top 4 still.

    Arteta doesn’t play to players’ strengths, but rather his robotic, scripted, negative tactics based on his 14 months of coaching experience.

    Shocking how some decided to ignore standards & expectations with Arteta.
    At least be consistent FFS. If Wenger & Emery had to go, then Arteta should also for the same failures.

    Some cry for patience; Emery got more points at this stage in his tenure with all the “deadwood” at the club. Where was his patience?

    The double standard and mental acrobatics to defend Arteta is truly amazing to watch. Move the goalpost spout the new excuse.

    Then rinse and repeat.

    1. Both Phil and Durand make some great points…the most important aspect of this whole scenario that’s not getting enough attention is that Arteta did two thing that clearly showed his hand and forever changed fan expectations for the current season…the fact that he is conveniently now trying to sell the whole “rebuild” narrative, is little more than his obvious attempt to conduct some much-needed damage control

      if Arteta had not pursued Willian, an older player, with assurances to boot, on too high of a wage to be a “super sub”, like at Chelski, when we already had depth in his “preferred” position, he could have used the “patience” credit he had earned from our FA Cup Victory to start the “rebuilding” process…instead he purchased WIllian, then made a spectacle out of his Wengeresque 11th hour Partey acquisition, which was his second mistake, not the fact we acquired him but how he packaged it, clearly signaling to most fans that we were in it to win it, so to speak

      for any manager willing to risk both his managerial reputation on such a counter-intuitive luxury purchase, like Willian, and our future long-term success, was irresponsible and incredibly short-sighted, which is the exact characteristic you don’t want any individual you’re pinning your future hope on to display

      he had the perfect opportunity, the same opportunity Wenger was afforded when Dein brought him on, to rebuild a club that had become antiquated and stale…instead of putting on his big boy pants, he chose to pursue what he believed to be the path of least resistance…this club needed someone who wasn’t afraid to do the dirty work that just such a major undertaking required, not someone looking for shortcuts, band-aids, half-measures and/or other individuals to blame

      1. We didn’t “buy” Willian, he was a free agent. Probably recruited because Arteta didn’t rely on Raul’s £70 million Pépé. Raul spent shocking £100 million on Pépé and Saliba. Before I start to criticise Arteta I will start with our recruiting policy, or more correct lack of recruiting policy. I believe that Arteta and Edu will do better if they get a proper transfer budget…

  15. 👍 Exactly right Phil.
    My question remains given the apparent different assessment criteria for Wenger, Emery and Arteta, what are the performance criteria and targets for the Manager/Head Coach at Arsenal FC?

    1. OG- your point is something you have consistently stated and is one that is right to be asked. AW let time catch up with him, and it ended as it did. Emery himself thought he was doing a good job, but all he was doing in reality was confusing himself, the club, the players and the supporters as to what exactly was going on. A 22 game unbeaten run was papering over so so many cracks, but at the time he was getting away with things because we were in and around the top 4 and that was where we needed to be while dealing with the Wenger “Transition”. (Wenger was sacked in reality but I have a scheduled catch up call with @Ken1045 this weekend so will not wish him to know I used the word sacked).
      Eventually the Club and job were proven to be simply too big for Emery and he followed Wenger out the door. The Club were decisive and very much in control of not allowing a sinking ship to go down even further.
      So now is when your point becomes so relevant. Arteta is statistically proving to be performing far worst than both Wenger and Emery ever did. Yet he seems to be given a clear path no matter where he takes us, which is at the moment fat to low in the table and with no clear pattern of team cohesion and pattern of play. We concede goals we shouldn’t. We make far too many schoolboy errors that are never learnt from. We create far too fewer chances than we have previously. The football is not consistently good to watch. We lose points against teams we should never allow. Just exactly when is Arteta to be held accountable?

      1. Phil, the job was not proven to be too big for Emery; he simply was not given support by senior management and the Board. As Head Coach he had virtually no say in the players transferred in for him to coach.
        If people make the effort to check his performance at PSG (supposedly a big club), Emery has the highest win percentage of any recent manager and won the second highest number of trophies of any manager in that Club’s history. That was despite the player power at PSG, which like at Arsenal, ultimately brought him down.
        Emery was shown no support nor patience, yet others are afforded all the patience in the world. Once fairness and equity goes out the window, the Club will continue to go down hill.

        1. Emery completely lost his dressing room and it started early. He was focusing too much on analysis instead of using the time on the training ground. Got the same outcome from PSG, he did absolutely not learn from his mistake. I was positive when we hired him because he had done his analysis and “knew what to be done”, but that was before he put his magic into practice…

  16. &enough of all this he inherited a mess talks,he inherited a team that finished 5th the previous season&was supposed to improve them so finishing 8th&currently being 9th has been a massive failure.forget the so called improved defence&trophies won because wenger recently won those trophies before he left

  17. according to the latest report. we have the 5 or 6 best squad of the premier league. Look at our last game against Leicester. Their bench runned too thin to compete against us.

    Problem is we don’t have a proven manager. I don’t hate Arteta but he keeps making strange choices that weaken the team. Against West Ham for example, why swap Auba and Saka? what kind of strategy is that?

    Also, he talks a lot about rotation and giving players rest but he has done none of it with Xhaka who has been playing all the games since his red card. He has been generally good but it is obvious to every observer he has looked tired and less aggressive the last 3 games. Give him a game or two to rest like everyone else.
    Finally, Arteta keeps playing some players out of their position. They end up making mistakes and the whole team becomes fragile and starting playing with handbrake. All the best game we won this season was when the team is balanced from back to front. He needs to improve on that.

    we are 9th, it’s not normal. He can stay as far as he gets us in Europe but otherwise, I think he needs to go.

  18. This season, is not an excuse and never should be an excuse. It is probably a more level playing field and more accurate league campaign than we have have for years. AND IT IS THE SAME FOR EVERYONE. The FACT (and not prediction) is we are having THE worse season in the league we have for nigh on quarter of a century. Some of the decision making has cost us points and goals. The consistency of the team under Arteta has not been as poor for years. Facts PLEASE not what may or may not happen, that is easily dismissed and like this article distorted to suit. Please be true to yourselves and look where our club is today!

  19. GAI is pretty much the only poster so far that isn’t slating Arteta

    I’ve been lampooned for my support of Arteta in the past. I don’t see him as the second coming but I do think he deserves longer and I think that he will turn the club round. Rose coloured specs maybe but that is what I feel even though I have read and digested all the points about his 15 months in charge. Some I agree with

    I think there are changes that have been made for the better and offloading the deadwood was one of them. I’d suggest that a lot of toxicity in the dressing room disappeared as they left the building. They might not have been getting game time but they were in and around the team.

    Also telling for me and a good reason I support Arteta is that he hasn’t lost the dressing room. I can’t imagine that the team would have fought back from 3-0 down under Emery regardless of the stats that show he was more successful.

    I agree with TMJW that this season has thrown up some strange score lines- in particular at the beginning and there have been unexpected successes and failures. It can’t be entirely irrelevant.

    Comparing the Chelsea/ Tuchel situation to Arsenal is like comparing chalk and cheese. Different, pro-active owner with big pockets for one

      1. He did, Phil. I cannot be sure that he would have had the same success but he is an excellent coach so he may well have done.

        As a serious question to you, do you think that the Chelsea squad is better or worse than ours?

        1. SueP- the Chelsea squad is far superior to Arsenals.Of that there is no doubt. Yet Lampard struggled to get performances out of them and Tuchel has got consistency. GoodCoaching from the same set of players says everything

          1. I couldn’t agree more Phil. A pertinent point though is whether or not Tuchel could have replicated his achievements at Arsenal the way he has at Chelsea.
            My original comparison between the two clubs was that at the very top the attitude of RA is he wants to be a winner at all costs unlike SK. Tuchel – a top man – and Abramovitch has so far been vindicated in his choice.
            I can’t see Kroenke making changes like that having had to pay off Emery or at any time.
            Arteta would have to be hovering between 13-15th right now for me to want him out with immediate effect. I came close to thinking he couldn’t turn it around earlier in the season but I am more confident now

          2. Chelsea invested more than £200 million last summer. From my point of view they have a much better squad than Arsenal. Chelsea have a potential top three squad and Lampard wasn’t able to bring out their potential. No doubt that Tuchel has done an excellent job according to their ambitions. Doing an excellent job with a balanced top squad is one thing, but there’s no guarantee that he would have done the same with Arsenal. Chelsea have an offensive owner willing to use money, Arsenal has Kroenke who didn’t invest anything in the club before 2020.

    1. Sue P. I rather think you have forgotten or overlooked my own regular and CONSISTENT support of Arteta GAI is far from alone and many other mature thinking folk on here stand up for Arteta too. Opinions can be wrongly formed by reading mainly one sided views, SueP.

  20. Personally, I would focus primarily on what is best for Arsenal.
    Would it be to sack Arteta now, and get XX?
    I am not sure.
    As it has been pointed out already, Chelsea have only improved after Tuchel was handed the job. But back in October Lampard was a hero in the job and Solskjaer was favourite to be next sacked manager.
    It is very difficult to tell, I think. If you look solely on our league position for the whole season, I would say, Arteta must go. Not good enough. But if you look only at how we have done since Xmas in the league, then it actually looks promising.
    Personally, I am for judging him at the end of the season, and if we have done well in the second half of the season and win the EL, I would say “keep”. But if we don’t improve further in the league and we get knocked out of the EL now, then I would have to say, he must go.

    1. SueP- I hope you are correct about Arteta. I seriously mean this as well. BUT. He needs to convince a fanbase that he is capable of doing this, and at the moment he is not. How can we dominate for Spurs for 75 minutes as we did, then get played off the park by 10 men and luckily escape with a win, that could quite easily have been a loss. That is not convincing at all. No game management from the players or Arteta. Same as at West Ham. Played like a Sunday Morning Division 10 pub side for half an hour, then decided to actually turn up. What exactly does he say to these players?
      As I say, he has a lot more convincing to do before I am on side. And one saving grace that he has had that both Wenger and Emery did not have the luxury of is simple. There are no crowds at the Emirates. Arteta would have been crucified by the supporters for some of the performances we have witnessed this season, and one thing we certainly know is Kronke listens to the fans when they react. Just ask Wenger and Emery

      1. Fair enough Phil
        It’s not about not wanting to be proved wrong. He gave me confidence. Perhaps he’s a con man.

      2. Shame then that he does not listen to the fans when we overwhelmingly want him, Kroenke, out then! Eh Phil!

        1. Jon- just have a read through all the posters on this thread. Then count how many are positive about Arteta and how many are negative. I would suggest it overwhelmingly shows far far far more negatives than positives.
          But of course, we are all just childish in our thoughts and you are correct I suppose?

  21. For me, I can see some general improvements in the defensive aspect, but whether or not it is just throwing all players behind the ball is debatable. MA has had a generally positive influence on the squad, but for me one thing stands out too much. This thing is something which may or may not be related to the unusual season that the author has cited (which I think does not only affect Arsenal negatively but the whole of the league). That is the indiscipline and the amount of mistakes that we are making almost every game. The defensive solidity is refreshing but it is almost always marred by mistakes and acts of indiscipline which portray a picture of slight problems in the man management of personnel. MA has not lost the dressing room offcourse but why are his players deliberately then disrespecting his gameplans and making such bad mistakes (as referred by Lacazette)?
    My policy is to support the team and the manager and always find positives but some obvious negatives have emerged, lack of player discipline being the primary one. I know MA cant do anything on the pitch, but the somewhat repeated occurences of these events mean, atleast to me, that MA might have trouble with his tactics or mana management. I hope that at the end of the season we would all be on the same page regarding the team and the manager, but the current times are worrying.

  22. The last time I looked, they did not give out points for improving the defensive aspect of a Club, but allowing for schoolboy brain farts. They give points out for winning and drawing games. At the end of a season you are judged on your league position and nothing else, save for the odd cup win. Where will we end up this season? Will anyone serious.y put money on a Seventh place finish which would (likely) guarantee EL football? I wouldn’t. Yet if you look at the remaining fixtures, and take in our Europa League QF as a minimum, then it should be easily attainable. But which Arsenal will turn up under Arteta? The first 75 minutes against an 11 man Spurs? Or the embarrassment of the final 15 minutes against 10 men? The absolute debacle of the first 35 minutes against West Ham? Or the final 55 minutes which should have been there from the start? The (according to the one dimensional TMJW) domination of Burnley in a 1-1 draw ( how far have we fallen) or the abysmal performance in the second leg against Olympiakos?
    Arteta has had 16 months, SEVEN new players of HIS CHOOSING, yet still we are regressing. Yet some feel he is the second coming of the Lord. GOD HELP US ALL

  23. It saddens me to witness the aggressiveness displayed by Arsenal supporters towards our Manager who only last season won us the FA Cup. To all you guys who fall into that category, please could you let me know what you consider to be acceptable in terms of our final League position at the end of this season?If you consider Arteta to be a failure who should be sacked, perhaps you could explain the path we should take to restore our fortunes at a time when Arsenal as a Club has been obliged to take up the offer of Govt loans to make ends meet.You will of course have to bear in mind the costs involved in paying off our Manager and his support team before we start the recruitment process to recruit our fourth Manager within three years.All this when we are unable to raise funds from player sales which reflects the poor quality of those inherited by Arteta.Perhaps some of you who are at least consistent in your scathing attacks on Arteta, have actually played the game at a decent level, or have worked within Football in some capacity so are well qualified to criticise professionals who our Board considers worthy of support.As fans you are of course entitled to your views but your lack of patience, which seems to be a reflection of today’s society, is difficult to comprehend .It may be age related as most of you seem eminently intelligent in print at any rate, but who knows, in 5 years time you may even ask yourself ,was I really do unreasonable.Here endeath the epistle.

    1. I’ll give it a try, I have been consistent with all 3 managers and their results.

      1. League position of 7th or better, show an improvement from last year. Arteta got Partey (top class midfielder), Gabriel as CB, he wanted Willian, Ceballos, and brought in Odegaard.
      No question we are better personnel wise, and got rid of much of the “deadwood” people mention. Plus he has had a year to implement his “style” and philosophy which no one can articulate, even Arteta.

      2. I would have gone after Nagelsmann not Arteta. He has experience building a team without massive funds, definitely improves youth (look at his former & current players).

      He also instills discipline in players, is tactical, displays his style & Philosophy in play on the pitch, and gets results.

      His impacts were quickly felt, gets results, and look at their table standing.

      Arteta is underperforming, still no consistency after 14 months, anemic attack he can’t solve, and what youth has he improved? Saka sparkled before Arteta, he stumbled across ESR due to injuries, and Willock, Saliba on loan for someone else to develop.

      Nketiah not improved under Arteta, Nelson who knows Arteta doesn’t give him chances. And Balogun is unknown because he didn’t get any chances in PL, even minutes as a sub.

      Odd how 9th is acceptable to some when 8th got Emery fired. 5th and 6th place got Wenger fired before that.

      Our new flexible standards sees 9th as the new 4th it seems. FA Cups didn’t save Wenger, but it’s brought up with Arteta.

      I hold owner and board at fault for Emery & now Arteta. Experienced manager was needed to rebuild after Wenger left, not inexperienced coach who never managed or built a single thing.

      Acceptable for Newcastle or Burnley but not for Arsenal.

      I won’t lower the standard for Arteta; he should raise his or step aside. Nagelsmann would have been a better choice and not cost a King’s ransom.

      1. Durand, it amazes me how people keep on shifting goal post when reviewing MA’s performance. They seem to have different standards when it comes to him and yet he is performing worse than his predecessors. I bet most of his backers will not have given the silly excuses had the manager been a different person. Do you think they will tolerate if Ancelloti is the coach?

        1. And you are not taking into consideration state of the club in December 2019?

          You are not taking into consideration that our mediocre struggling club went into lockdown three months later due the COVID-19 pandemic, which wasn’t particularly beneficial for a young manager in a struggling club. You don’t take into consideration that in spite of all the problems we won the FA Cup and Community Shield in August 2020.

          You don’t take into consideration that we started this season almost without a summer break and proper preseason preparations. How could that influence on the quality of our games during the season? You are not taking into consideration that we are playing same number of games in a shorter time span than ever before.

          This season isn’t a normal season and can’t be compared to anything before, because it’s very challenging in every aspect, physically and mentally. Yes, it’s complicated for all, but it’s definitely more complicated for a struggling club like Arsenal with a relatively new and inexperienced manager. Is it likely that all this do influence on our game quality and players? I will say definitely and it’s inevitable.

      2. 👍 Durand, lack of consistency and no published performance criteria and targets.
        I wanted Ancellotti when he was available, after the departure of Wenger. I would have supported Nagelsmann, as I did Emery, as I do Arteta while he is manager at Arsenal. I just want to know “the rules of the game”?

  24. @Grandad- so Arteta no doubt had a very good first “half-season” which ended in an FA Cup win. Just how long is this supposed to give him in tour view? Does this make him untouchable? De Matteao won the Champions League in his first Half- Season and was sacked a few months into the following one? I’m not saying whether this was right or wrong, especially taking into account how Chavs treat their managers, but what it does show is NO manager is ever unaccountable for underperforming.
    Look at Chris Wilder at Sheffield United. Probably over performed last season, and is now jobless because he has failed to achieve similar results.
    Just how long should Arteta get? He has NOT improved results. He has NOT progressed us in the league. He has NOT improved consistently in performances. He has NOT shown the club is going forward under his management. What he has done is consistently allowed inconsistency. Just how is Arteta not accountable for his failings. Because in my mind he has improved NOTHING

    1. He improved the defending Phil. Killed our attacking play in the process, turned a serial golden boot contender in 2 leagues (Auba) into a shadow of himself, by not playing to player’s strengths.

      Somehow our boring, negative, inconsistent football is not his fault. Didn’t he agree about developing young players when he signed on?

      Willock, Mavroporas, and Saliba someone else is developing, Nelson, Nketiah stagnating, Balogun iced, Guendouzi gone, etc….

      Again I ask what are the goals to judge Arteta’s progression or regression? Table standing? europa Trophy or else? Youth development? What are they?

      Seemingly lower your standards or you are impatient, greedy, and not a real fan.

      Wonder how many that called for Wenger and Emery sacking are preaching “patience” now with Arteta?

      Cue the excuses and mental acrobatics; “yeah but it’s different now because……..”

    2. Phil and Durand some excellent mature points confirming what is true and staring us all in the face. Some of us see it some of us dont want too. I want Arteta to succeed, i thought he would but it is obvious the guy is short of ideas on the direction this club needs to go. We have never had so much promise in the youth ranks and he has either ignored our young players or played them when his hand is forced. I think he has missed a massive trick with what we have at this club, i think he has put this club further back and i think we wont recover from the damage that has been done, our young players have stagnated, or been sent away. I was really excited by what we had coming through and it has been largely ignored. Ok maybe he thought they weren’t ready but they have been given zero tolerance while the older players have been able to get away with poor performance after poor performance.

  25. Thank you gentlemen.All I would say to you is Arsenal as a Club has no divine right to be be guaranteed a place at the top table.Others have surpassed us in terms of footballing ability and finance.During the past decade mediocrity and incompetence has pervaded the Club on and off the pitch and yet you seem incapable of realising how deep rooted the problem was in the latter part of the Wenger era. Emery arrived at Arsenal with a very good CV, but I cannot remember any pleas for leniency from many supporters who use this site when he was sacked.From memory, it took Alex Ferguson about four seasons before he made any impression at Old Trafford, but due to the wisdom of their Board,he went on to bring them unprecedented success.Based on your requirements and demands he would have been regarded as a failure.There is little point in continuing this debate as better men than me would fail to change your views.On Arteta, we will have to agree to differ, but I sincerely hope he goes on to prove you wrong.As true Arsenal supporters I would hope that you share these sentiments.

    1. Grandad. Well said, particularly about the non footballing issues that have blighted this club and trickled down to the playing side of things
      It is very difficult to be continually successful if those at the top fail

    2. Grandad i appreciate your reply, and appreciate that we can debate and disagree without hurling insults.

      I hope Arteta succeeds and I had high hopes for him by how he ended last year.
      Starting this year he dropped his 4-2-3-1 formation to a 3-4-3, played Tierney as a LCB as well as others in unfamilar positions.

      Why fix something that wasn’t broken? If I’m not mistaken we play a 4-2-3-1 basically now, so why switch only to switch back again?

      Decisions like these, player management, youth not developing after 14 months raise questions for me about our progress.

      It’s just a learning curve for an inexperienced coach, not surprising or unexpected, but can we afford to do so at such a critical point with the club?

      Why not an experienced hand to weed out the rot, keep the ship steady, and set a foundation for an Arteta to eventually take over? That seems reasonable and practical to me.

      Yes it cost millions to sack Emery, and millions more to bring in an experienced coach. However, how many millions are we losing in 9th as opposed to being in 6th let’s say?

      Saliba and Gabriel cost £60 million, Partey alone another £45 million, so we did have money, but would a Tuchel, Ancelloti, or their like have been interested? Did we even try? Questions I’m afraid we may never know.

      My point being gross mismanagement by board and owner bear the brunt, and I have doubts Arteta or anyone can overcome that hurtle.

  26. like I said earlier in a reply post to Durand and Phil, Arteta made his own bed because instead of adopting this “patience” narrative following the FA Cup victory, he instead chose to take actions that implied that we were only a few pieces away from competing…I believe if he had been frank and honest with the fanbase, once he had earned a little respect with the Cup win, and spoke about his detailed plan regarding the “rebuilding” process, instead of buying Willian, there would have been some who were naturally displeased by the potential time duration of such a proposition, but I think many would have rallied around this absolutely imperative cause…this would have changed the narrative regarding expectations, especially if he had incorporated many of our younger talents within the first-team squad…the fact that he mismanaged most of our prospects, and continues to do so even now, has many within the fanbase questioning his ability and/or desire to actually take on this arduous task…I would go so far as to suggest that he doesn’t even have a definitive plan in place, as he continually moves the goalposts whenever it suits his narrative of that particular day

    1. RVL
      My sentiments exactly. I think he started reading and believing his own press.

      This lost year was an opportunity to blood youth like Saliba, Martinelli, Nelson, etc…. Sub appearances during the last part of matches, Saliba starting in group stage Europa games, moments like these are rare opportunities that Arteta missed.

      Even now would it have hurt pairing AMN with Partey instead of Xhaka or Elneny some matches? Or Saliba in a back 3 instead of Tierney to start the season?

      Even now ESR losing time to Odegaard, who we most likely can’t afford. I like Odegaard, but 2 years from now which would serve the club better, ESR or Odegaard in the 10 slot?

      Pepe finds form then dropped for Willian, Saka shifted to other side & form dips. Needless tinkering that hurts the player and team. Why?

      My concern is Arteta is taking precedence over the team. His tinkering, freezing out, favoritism, saying some need rest yet never dropping others.

      His learning curve is costing us points when an experienced manager would k ow to avoid those pitfalls. Wenger’s favoritism for some (Ramsey and Ozil shoehorning as RW) cost us as well, lacking a true DM was another example

      1. totally preaching to the choir…I spent countless hours on this site ranting about Wenger’s favoritism, propensity for shoehorning players and his outright refusal to properly address the DM position…now we appear to be back to square one…the tragic part is I really think we have the makings of a good squad if Arteta had just stuck to the plan

        imagine if we hadn’t pick-up Willian, sorted out the buyouts early, kept our younger players in-house then brought in Partey and another midfielder, which we could of easily done if we had sold Xhaka, Laca and/or Bellerin, then not re-signed Luiz(personally I would likewise have sold Leno and kept Emi)…our wage bill would have been substantially lower and we could have used the first-half of the season to evaluate our roster properly…then at the winter window we could have loaned out whoever didn’t make the grade, so as to potentially increase their respective valuations for the upcoming summer window

        Arteta just couldn’t see the forest for the trees…I really don’t think we’ve functionally learned anything this year, minus ESR’s potential value to the club, which was just by happenchance, that we didn’t know last year…what a waste of a season

  27. I see a lot of discussion between arteta supporters and those that want him out so I ask this of you all

    what is an acceptable finish? 7th and El final
    What is a Good finish? 5/6th close to 4th and EL Winner

    I personally support arteta but if you told me arteta needs to be sacked during the 1st half of the season I would have told you yes as we were trash. If you take the last 15 epl games which is nearly half the season we are 4th with only the current top 3 above us 2 pts less then utd. This shows improvement but we need more.

    1. @Ackshay- try asking the author of this Headline.Just don’t expect any realistic answer because he hasn’t got one. As with most of the rubbish he writes, it’s a one-sided view that has as many flaws as Arteta does.

      1. Yes it is one sided but so are most of the arteta out fans. This is becoming more like the Wenger years with fans divided. I see the good but also the bad and it baffles me that the so called fans cannot do the same.

        1. @Ackshay- this is where I believe you are wrong. We can all see the good. It’s just over clouded by everything that is so wrong.

  28. RVL and Durand just picked up on your posts and would like you to know that I agree wholeheartedly with most of your very justifiable criticism of some of the tactics and selections made by Arteta this season.At times I am completely baffled and frustrated by some of his decisions ,the acquisition of Willian, the failure to see through Xhaka and Louis etc etc.That said ,until recently I felt there was more resilience in the team, but this seems to have gone with Holding being left out inexplicably?Arteta has a lot to learn, of that there is no doubt, but I think you will agree we cannot keep changing Managers every other year like some wealthy Clubs can.Stability is vital for a self sustaining Club like ours and our revamped Board seem determined to prove their faith in Arteta is not misplaced.Thank you guys for entering into this debate in the right spirit.One final thought,I am not convinced Edu is the right man to have in charge of recruitment ,what are your views? Cheers.

    1. Agreed Grandad, and sorry to join in on the discussion late. I believe that MA would have been far better supported by an experienced director of football. Someone like Monchi, Rangnick or Sven would have mitigated the impact of various mistakes that MA has made and would have helped him better establish a working system. Edu and MA are both young and lack experience, and Edu seemingly prefers the agent route. Also I dont think there are squad management discussions between them with Edu laying down certain guidelines and general framework. The others I mentioned above would have helped MA a lot and we would have enjoyed the results, something similar to the incredible Arsene Wenger- David Dein partnership. Also I believe MA needs a strong Assistant manager who can help him with matchday decisions, and also provide some alternate perspective to match situations.

    2. I agree about Edu Grandad, I don’t think he was the right hire. Personally I thought Sven was the right fit for us. He found gems for low cost; perfect for our owner and club.

      I also feel that Edu has been far to passive regarding his job responsibilities. Arteta needed structure and guidance, especially as a new coach. A Dein type figure which worked wonders with Wenger.

      No surprise with the dip since Dein was forced out, so imagine Arteta trying without a Dein type.

      I think Arteta was given too much power and control too quickly; but now since he has it he has to take the responsibility and criticism. He could bring in an experienced assistant to help him or help develop youth but he hasn’t. Why not when it’s obviously needed.

      Ego? Control freak? We will probably never know.

    3. @Grandad- a good point about Edu. I felt at the time he was appointed he was brought in because of his knowledge and contacts of the Brazilian and South American youth systems. Martinelli being exactly the type of young player this club should be buying.
      However, Luiz and Willian seem to have been agent led signings which is what Arsenal and Wenger tried desperately to avoid.
      If an ex player with European experience was needed then Overmars seemed a better fit. But why was Mislinat allowed to leave? .

  29. An interesting article, I agree with most of it.

    We are and have been a mediocre team for several years, but If you are able to read statistics you will find that we slowly are getting better. Last two season did we let in 1,4 goal / game in the legue, this season after the West Ham game have we let in 1,1 goal / game. Our last 15 games have the following results.: W8, D4, L3, which is top three or four in league, and significant better than the results from September to Christmas.

    Arteta has inherited a squad that have very little to do with how Arteta want us to look like. Therefore did he offloaded players in January and will keep on doing that next summer. Let’s judge him next season when the squad are influenced by Arteta, and hopefully have had a normal season with summer break and proper preseason preparations.

    Aretat became our head coach / mananger in December 2019, three months later did we got the lockdown due to the pandemic. Which absolutely not could have been beneficial for a struggling team lacking confidence, with a relatively inexperienced head coach in the chair. In spite of that he was able to win the FA Cup in 2020 and the FA Community Shield against Liverpool before the start of this season.

    Now we are in a good postion in UEL and have a good chance to reach the final. Arsenal could very well win the UEL and qualify for CL next season. Let’s judge Arteta when it’s reasonable to do it. In the mean time should we sit quiet in the boat and support our team.

    Rome wasn’t built in one year, and it takes time to rebuild Arsenal and make us a serious title contender. How many of our players are good enough for Man City, Liverpool or Chelsea? Not many, perhaps one in December 2019, and now there is few more.

    I’m quite sure that we will have a much better squad next season🔴⚪️ COYG

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