Arsenal legend is convinced that Mikel Arteta has made a big mistake

Martin Keown reckons that Mikel Arteta has put his job on the line by choosing to extend David Luiz’s contract for another year.

Arsenal recently announced that they have handed a one-year extension to David Luiz.

The announcement came as a shock to most of the club’s fans who have seen the Brazilian struggle to defend for them.

Luiz’s showed in Arsenal’s first game since football resumed why he is such a wrong choice for Arteta.

He entered the game against Manchester City as a replacement for the injured Pablo Mari, and he spent less than 30 minutes in the game before being sent off.

In that short period of time, his error cost Arsenal the first goal and he gave away the penalty for City’s second goal.

Yet the Gunners decided to give him a new deal until the end of next season. Keown has slammed that decision and claimed that Arteta should know his time as a manager is too limited to be making such a bad decision.

“What I’m concerned about now is the stock of the manager,” the Gunners legend told talkSPORT host Jim White. “I think there’s enough favour there for Arteta as a young manager to maybe get away with this one.

“Nonetheless, I think he should be making the right decisions for the football club and I don’t believe David Luiz is the right man to be in that dressing room.

“Frank Lampard took a different view when he took over at Chelsea; he wanted David Luiz out of his dressing room, for whatever reason, whether that was performance or character, I’m not sure, but he made that clear decision.

“Now, I think David Luiz is very lucky to be there back at Arsenal for another year.

“But then I worry about the manager, because you only get so long in this job and you’ve got to make the right decisions, and the early decisions have to be right.

“That is a huge problem, that position; David Luiz has given the most penalties away this season, four, he’s not mobile enough, he goes to ground too early…

“As former players we don’t enjoy ridiculing and hammering players, and he’s had a fine career, but he’s only ever done it in a back-three.

“So unless it is that Arteta is going to change to a back-three and he’s going to play in the middle, as he did at Chelsea when he won the Premier League, Arsenal are in real trouble.

“Because he’s going to be exposed, he’s going to make rash challenges, and actually in possession he’s been really disappointing. He’s often going back to the goalkeeper and inviting pressure from the opposition.

“So this is massive for Arteta now. He’s got to go looking for central defenders, there’s injuries in that position, David Luiz isn’t the answer and he’s getting another year’s contract!”

Tags David Luiz Martin Keown Mikel Arteta


  1. Martin Keown is correct in the statement that Arteta has put pressure on himself in extending the Luiz contract. Hopefully Arteta sees him as a DM, because heaven help Arsenal if he is to play CB (and Keown should know).

  2. Keon should keep kwayet and let Arteta do his job.. It is Arteta job that is on the line. What does Keon have on the line?.. His mouth

  3. As long as Arteta is not playing Clown Luiz it’s okay. A waste of money – yes. But the disaster on the pitch can be avoided. Arteta need a hand to hold. Now he have Clown Luiz for season 2020/21. A romantic touch.

  4. Decisions like keeping Clown Luiz are bound to make even firm Arteta supporters like me sit up and wonder if we are right about Arteta being the right man. An inexplicable decision, even given the shortage of proper CBs in our club. To my mind Keown is spot on!

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