BBC Pundit questions if Arsenal has made any progress under Mikel Arteta

Mark Lawrenson remains unconvinced by Mikel Arteta and predicts a Bournemouth win Monday evening.

Arsenal made Mikel Arteta their new manager just over a month ago. The Spaniard took over a club that had been poor and struggling under Unai Emery and Freddie Ljungberg.

The fans had started falling out with the players who seemed to be playing with a serious lack of belief in themselves.

However, Arteta has managed to change the mood around the club from the players to the fans.

While he has won just two of his matches so far, he has overseen an upturn in performance and the mending of the players and fans relationship.

However, not everyone seems to be convinced with the work that Arteta has done and one of them is Mark Lawrenson.

The BBC Pundit admitted that Arsenal getting a draw against Chelsea with ten men was commendable, however, he insisted that the Gunners should be doing more under Arteta now as he has had time to know his players.

He said via his BBC column: “As well as Arsenal did to draw with Chelsea after having David Luiz sent off, when I look at them I am just not convinced.

“It is early days for Mikel Arteta, but I would love to know what he is thinking now he has got to know his squad a bit. Arsenal drew with Bournemouth on Boxing Day, Arteta’s first game. He would be happy with the same result on Monday, but I am going to go with a Bournemouth win. 2-0.”

Those comments seem a little harsh all things considered, however, until a proper decent winning run is put together there will be some that remain unconvinced with the Spaniard.


  1. Exactly.
    6 Pl games. 1 win 1 loss and 4 draws is appalling.
    Especially as Arteta has inherited a team battle hardened after 60 games under Emery.
    He’s also had huge breaks between games with no EL games to play and the winter break to come.
    So he has actually had a lot of time to work with the squad.
    I think Arsenal will beat Bournemouth but it’s the PL games that count.
    On track for our lowest PL tally in 29 years yet people keep talking improvement!!!

    1. “Battle hardened after 60 games underEmery” – what was the war cry we heard from our captain?…We were scared of Watford!!!

      We were on track for a CL place and a european trophy until UE messed that up, so don’t hold your breath wishing for the 29years to become a reality.

      Any further thoughts on your £3,000 a week squad yet stevo?
      I am patiently waiting for the revelations to be explained fully, as I’m sure you’ll do better than MA’s inherited team of warriors.

    2. 6 game 1 w 1l 4 d but looking at how the team play the fight the teamwork there was huge improvement. Under MA they play with purpose. If UE still incharge we could easily loss all the game. That’s it.

  2. We’ve improved as much as possible but we just have average players. You can’t turn average and below average players in to Top players

    We don’t have players capable of getting us to the top 4

    1. new players need time to adapt

      additionally most of our players are young and u23

      they need time to gel and coordinate as a team

      this is very basic for football or any team sports game

    2. Do we have worse players than the saints, they were in the relegation zone when their new manager took over, but has managed to win so many games. We should stop making excuses for the manager and the players. This was same thing we did during Emery first year ,making all forms of excuses for him, a good manager should be able to change his team at least from his third game. Let MA go on a winning run that will convince us that he is the man to bring smiles back to the Emirates.

      1. You don’t play enough team sports to make that judgement. 3 games talk is rubbish. Did pep take 3 games or a whole season? He finished 4th his 1st season. Klopp finished 8th or something like that after Brendan came 6th and didn’t win as many games either…

        It depends entirely on what your circumstances are. Saints were fighting relegation – that’s survival, arsenal were never in a relegation fight and unlike saints, we hadn’t put out the same 11 until a week ago.

        Arsenal are trying to play to a pattern of a philosophy not trying to stay up. Focusing on their passing again and defending resolutely. Emery ruined our attacking flair. Our attack was why teams sat off us, now the come at us because they know they can score, whereas before they may or may not score. That fear factor comes with winning but winning in style.

      2. Arteta does need to get the team winning rather than drawing matches, but the difference between the Mikel and the hapless Emery is like chalk and cheese. He has stemmed the tide of soul destroying football under Emery and looks like a man with a plan. Could not have said that about UE who was out of his depth at Arsenal.

        Southampton have really turned their season around but you made a mistake in thinking that they changed their manager – they didn’t.

  3. But Innit, we have signed over 17 new players sice we last finished in the top four and that was when we had no defence, mentally weak, lazy , overpaid and underperforming dross!!!

    Are you telling me we have gone backwards after all these new players, or can you explain how we managed top four with even worse players than the new ones signed by the new regime.

  4. arteta needs time….a manager needs a good pre season and not manage a club halfway through the league and expect outstanding results

  5. Arteta picked up a squad on its knees….it’s quite plain to see the improvements have been massive…if you understand anything at all about football besides the score line!
    This team is getting fitter and learning the way Arteta wants them to play. Klopps initial appointment at Liverpool was not followed by win after win…it’s a process. Now look where they are! It’s such a shame that the internet allows any twat with an opinion to comment. If half of you cocks had your way we would be swapping manager after every loss….go and stroke your little willy and leave the adults to comment on the important stuff. And yes Stevo, this is directed at you

  6. Just how well did Klopp do in his first season? 2nd season? How much did Liverpool spend the whole 2 seasons?

    How much time has Arteta had? How much has he spent?

    And you’re wrong…Arsenal, yes Arteta, will beat Bournemouth. 2-0 to Arsenal.

  7. We have looked like we are more together as a team and as tactics but the truth is, our results have not really improved at all. The Arteta effect didn’t kick in and we are still waiting. Far too many draws and only one win, needs to be turned into wins and we need to go on a run, for Arsenals sake and Arteta. If we dont, just like Emery, the pressure from the media will mount and the results wont come. We have a team not capable of top four at the moment but nobody can say this team isn’t capable of top six. If we dont at least make top 6 and get to CL final, the pressure will be full on.

      1. Hi Reggie,

        I agree with your post and hope that the media don’t stir up the fans who can turn in a flash. That isn’t productive at all for Arteta who is working his socks off to improve the culture at the club. I am very supportive of him but I can read already the murmurings of discontent from quite a few on this site who frequently compare our position to Southampton who have had a real turnaround but this is just one team. From other teams around us their stats don’t read so well either. Spurs, ManU, Wolves and SU have not had the best run in the last five games either and Palace have slipped below us with worse stats.

        Yes, it is the not winning that keeps us where we are now, as in drawing so many games. We just need to convert those into wins. Glass half full.

        1. Sue, we are working our socks off to get draws, the draws will go one way or the other eventually. Which way is so important obviously.

  8. The problem was the new regime let go of our senior squad and didn’t replace anyone adequately. Arsene did leave us a strong squad and everyone said he needed a defender, holding midfielder and a winger to complete the team.

    The new regime along with Emery got rid of our best ball carrying and creative midfielders but didn’t think to replace any of them, mhiki, Wilshire, Ramsey. Let our best aerial striker in Welbeck go (laca and Auba rarely score headers), and they brought in a winger in the summer after. This team is the result of poor management from Raúl and Vinai, not Emery alone.

    This team is the weakest arsenal side because the nucleus of the team which has always been our midfield is bare. Willock would have benefited training with Wilshire, Ramsey, Mhiki, Xhaka and Ozil as they are all very different midfielders.

    Apart from Xhaka, Ozil and Bellerin, not a single person in that team knows Wenger ball. Arteta is trying to play a type of Wenger ball but the players they’ve bought may not be able to do so.

    Patterns of play do work and drilling teams does yield results but you have to have the right players to do that and they need to be able to execute those movements. Wengers football was magnificent, everyone can agree but he made sure everyone could play his football.

    Arteta is a new coach and will need time but he’s so far doing OK considering the strength of the league now and his way of playing.

  9. The results have been garbage there is no denying that. However, we just changed coaches and MA got a 3 year commitment so we have no choice but to be patient and hope for better results. There have been positive signs like the rejuvenated fighting spirit. Why they decided to give him 3 years though is beyond me, after the Emery disaster it would have made more sense to give him a 1 year contract, max 2.

    1. QD,
      The results haven’t been garbage in my opinion as we haven’t been losing so much as drawing games. Wins do need to happen, but the mentality is there to fight which was obviously lost under Emery.

      I’m not sure that Arteta would have signed a one year contract. It’s a bit like giving him the caretaker role rather than the job itself.

  10. If only our battle had been between only 11 men against 11 men, we could easily have won 4 or 5 and drawn 1 or 2.
    People close their eyes to what is actually happening and continue their yadda yadda yadda.

  11. He is accurate, no genius nor a scoop tho.

    It just takes to look at our 5 EPL games formation to guess result beside Man U who completely messed up that day.

    That is not enough at all, not better than Eddie and worst than Emery for sure in term of results.

    To not be able to put right team on pitch nor at least consider results to change a losing formation over & over is simply ridiculous at some point.

    Useless to bring spirit back, same results ruins it all at some point.

    We can’t gain confidence without winning games. To score, lead to then conceid for a draw does affects players in the end.

    We can’t beat bornsmouth at home, they can do so.

    If we lose or draw this one, same at Burnley; Arteta must go then for doing worst than Eddie.

    But he won’t get fired unless stadium gets empty, Kroenke doesn’t move, he makes money.

    We indeed not use to fight for survival nor type of players to do so.

    The players will fall appart again if we do not win at Burnley.

    We will be close to relegation zone and pressure that goes with it.

    I predict we would do worst, under relegation’s pressure and get relegated!

    Look at Southampton’s run for survival! They win games back to back, bottom table few weeks back, infront of us today.

    Worst part, our lunatic coach is not at all considering this at all, he has Top4 as target and believe can be done which is so crazy.

    Now, to point players relegation dangermay most likely have them panic and do worst.

    Maybe it is hard to hear and look at but we already in relegation fight and losing it, Southampton can go from bottom above us, highlight that!

    We can’t even secure a 4M deal dorKurzawa who just been snatched by Juve! We had Koulibaly handed but PSG will get him and eyeing on Auba to replace Cavani leaving to Athletico with Chelsea also chasing him now!

    One sure thing, we will finish under. 10 place fighting for survival! We been there already for a minute…

    1. We are all entitled to our opinions as you are with yours

      Apart from Liverpool, Man City and Leicester at the top and Norwich at the bottom, the league is very open. A lot can happen between now and the end of the season but you seem to have convinced yourself that we are going to get relegated.

      That was a distinct possibility under Emery. The body language of the team, the fury of the fans said it all. The away fans at Chelsea sang their hearts out so Arteta must have made at least a few Gooners sense a change for the better

      I’m the first to get twitchy about matches and score lines but your pessimism is overwhelming

  12. Surprised at Lawrenson who I regard as one of the more sensible and realistic pundits.That said Arteta will prove him wrong,starting on Monday.

  13. We were robbed of winning more titles. When Rosicky, Cazorla, Diaby, and Ramsey being a fourth or fifth choice player in the pecking order. That team or those teams, if they had the protection that Liv have now, one late challenge is a yellow or even a red, one player can’t make more than two or three bad tackles, can’t take cards in turn trying to be clever tactically, they get warned. Benefit of doubt going to forward attacking team. Wall is not aloud to step forward and a player can not run out to block the set piece shot. If we had todays game back then, we had the best team in England, just not the best squad. The rules have made it so that opponents have to try and beat you, no more dirty tricks and let’s kick AFC where it hurts, injuries galore we had with that old game. But look at Liv, they have almost the same set of players every week. I feel it’s a bit of an injustice, if we had that Liv team back then – half the first team would be missing, VVD would be targeted, two forwards would’ve had their legs broken by now. Wenger never got the protection even when pundits were openly laughing at how you just kick Arsenal and they don’t like it, of course they didn’t like it, what the heck sort of person would.

  14. Arteta has made a huge impact so far under the circumstances. He is focused on what he wants and is making progress. He does not deserve this low rating.

Comments are closed

Top Blog Sponsors
JustArsenal Top Ten UK Blogs