David Luiz has claimed that new coach Mikel Arteta has reinstilled the winning mentality into Arsenal players, and is keen to help the club push on for a place in next season’s Champions League.
The Brazilian was interviewed by Ian Wright this week, and the former Chelsea defender seems to be upbeat on our clubs chances of ending the campaign well, praising the changes made by new boss Mikel Arteta.
“Mikel is doing amazing, I am enjoying being almost 33 years old and still learning and improving and to see how beautiful football is,” Luiz stated.
“Every day he changes something more and changes something more and how a new philosophy can still improve me as a person, a player as a leader.
“Mikel has tried to make us understand where to play and how to play. He gives us a plan: ‘If the team is like that, if there is a low block parking the bus how you can create, take the responsibility to make a risky pass.’
“If the pass arrives there then we create an opportunity and score the goal, if the pass doesn’t arrive there we can win the ball back quickly.
“Mikel has brought for the club a philosophy where everybody has to think for the best of the club. And the best of the club is to make the club shine again. Everybody, not just players, everyday has to breathe this oxygen, ‘this club is to win’.
“It doesn’t matter when, or by who, that was lost. What matters is to bring it back.”
The Brazilian went onto admit that he just wants to get back to playing football, and is targeting a push for the top five when the campaign resumes.
“I want to be on the pitch,” Luiz said. “Doing what I love and making people happy. If we are going to play the season until the end I want to try and be in the Champions League with Arsenal.”
Despite a tumultuous campaign, we currently sit only five points behind the Champions League places with a game in hand, and although it is difficult to know if form will play a part after such a break, it is worth noting that we are the only top ten side who have won their last three matches in the division.
As much as a Champions League place looked out of reach for much of the campaign, I wouldn’t be shocked to see us put pressure on Manchester United or maybe even Chelsea for their league spot.
Has a manager ever gotten as much positive press after such a short spell in charge? Did Chelsea’s Lampard get this sort of attention earlier in the campaign? Is the Champions League a realistic target still this term?