Shkodran Mustafi has added his name to a long and growing list to come out and praise the amazing impact that Mikel Arteta has had at Arsenal in such a short space in time.
The Spaniard arrived in December to take on a team in turmoil, a team playing without heart and looking likely to settle for a dismal mid-table finish, and we now look like a team that could push on and secure a place in Europe this season, a team that no opponent would like to come up against.
There isn’t a single player in the playing squad that hasn’t made improvements for all to see since the appointment, and the team plays very much together, and Shkodran Mustafi has given some more insight from the inside on what it is like to worth with the new manager.
“Each one of us has benefitted from this arrival,” Mustafi said. “He has brought a very clear identity and a very clear idea of how he wants to play football, but at the same time he gives you space to make your own decisions because you are on the pitch and you know exactly what the coach wants from you.
“I think as well he has been listening into the changing room and listening to the players to find out why things were not working out before. Sometimes we don’t realise how difficult it is to be a coach because you have so many people that you have to make follow your idea.
“Sometimes players are happy, sometimes players that don’t play are not so happy, so it is not easy to have all on board and all agreeing with your ideas and philosophy. But he has managed to do that and in this short period it has been something very difficult to do, but he has done it. That is why we created a bit of momentum and we are heading in the right direction.
“I have benefitted from his arrival and his coaching. When you are 28 years old, you think you have heard everything and then a coach comes in and you still learn and hear things that you you have never heard before.
“He has been incredible since his arrival. He has shown his aura and his personality just shows that he is so convinced of the way he thinks football should be and how he wants his team to play, and it you just agree with it and soak in all the information.”
There is no doubt that Arteta is already impressing in his role, and we can only hope that his philosophy will continue in the long-term.
As for Mustafi, he has impressed since the arrival of Arteta as boss along with the rest of the squad, but with Pablo Mari having recently displaced him in the first-team, there is talk that he could be sold in the coming window.
Will players be keen to stay at the club this summer thanks to the arrival of Arteta? Could Aubameyang also be convinced to stay despite links with the exit door?