Mikel Arteta just wants to play!

Since Mikel Arteta joined Arsenal from Everton in 2011, the Spaniard was nearly ever-present in the starting XI for the next three years and was considered to be the midfield general and leader of the side. In the summer of 2014 Mikel was made the club captain, but after playing just twelve games he was cruelly injured and ended up having an ankle operation last Christmas-

He has now finally returned to full fitness but instead of returning to his leaders position he has found his place taken by Francis Coquelin but is still desperate to be involved as much as possible. “I really missed it [when I was out],” he said on Arsenal.com. “I had a really tough period last year after my last game in November and I went through some really difficult moments with my surgery.

“For me it is the frustration [that is the hardest thing] because there is always pain and you are trying to get back everyday and you spend a lot of time doing rehabilitation.

“When the players go outside for a training session, you feel wasted. They come back, they travel, they have different times to you and you don’t spend much time with them. Personally I don’t feel productive.

“I’m here because I want to play games, make this team more successful and be a part of it. When I’m not able to do that I still have to contribute, be positive, be good around the other players, give advice and try to help my team-mates. But it is not the same.

“But I worked really hard and tried to stay positive, do my best and here I am again now, earning my place in the squad and ready to help the team.”

Wenger has been easing Arteta by giving him three appearances as a substitute, but the 33 year-old has been using his time on the bench to study the game, and heis very likely to go into management when he finally retires.

“I just watch the game and things come to my head naturally – things that I believe we can do better or things we are having trouble with, weaknesses of the other team or if we are having a few problems,” he continued.

“You are excited but nervous as you don’t know when you are going to get thrown in. When you get thrown in you want to be ready for it with a good warm-up and ready to make an impact to help the team achieve the win.”

Despite his injury problems, Wenger gave his captain an extra year on his contract in the summer, so Le Prof obviously thinks that Arteta can have a good influence on the team even if he is unlikely to play while Coquelin is fit. He certainly has a wealth of experience and knowledge to pass on to our youngsters and can still have a big influence on the team…

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  1. Arteta is past his best he must just move back to Spain I’m sure one of Real Sociedad or Athletic Bilbao will take him seeing he’s a Basque player!

    1. That didn’t stopped him to actually put very good performances when he came in. He is the captain. Don’t worry, he will leave next season. An unsung hero for Arsenal all these years.

      1. That’s why I like Budd. “Don’T worry, he will leave next season”, Budd said calmly of Arteta, knowing fully well what’s on Arsene’s mind.

        I envy you, amigo. I do.

        1. I am sure you are well aware of the fact that he has only one year contract which will expire at the end of the season. Hardly a secret.

          1. Yes, I’m also sure you are aware that no one thought he was gonna remain at the club till now, he was surprisingly given a new deal. He could re-sign again, like every other last time.

    2. after seeing how our internationals have performed i have come to realise i drastically overated them. only sanchez ozil and cech deserve to be arsenal players the rest are just average

  2. if only he could remember that he once was an attacking midfielder and quit the sideways passing…will always remember his 87min long range goal against Man City in 2012…
    Anyway he doesn’t have the legs to be a Defensive midfielder..

    1. So bold of you asking him to his face. Lol! And an awkward silence followed.

    2. Anyone’s place. Wenger decides. If you actually read the article (which you clearly didn’t) he does not say he wants to take anyone’s place. He’s just saying that he must be ready when Wenger throws him in the battle. A very humble answer from a great man. Respect!

      1. Aren’t you deciding for yourself who’s licking yours? Would be very awkward if someone else is doing it for you.

  3. Will never forget that long range goal against City! Probably, the best moment I’ve had from Mikel since he came.

    1. I admired Arteta a lot when he played for Everton. When we got him, everybody was expecting something superb from the trio of Santi, Wilshere and him (Arteta). Never happened.

      I think I can say it was not really a good idea converting him. That guy used to dribble very well and could shoot too.

    2. his cameo appearance vs Palace was great this season. Last ditch tackle when they were through, cool, calm and collected as always.

  4. Arsenal will have to replace
    16-20 players in the next
    couple of years. Arteta is one.
    Cech Mertz Koz Monreal Debuchy
    Arteta Flamini Rosicky Sanogo
    Cazorla Giroud Wellbeck (no good)
    Walcott (injury) and Wilshere (injury).
    Campbell and Wellington don’t look good enough.
    Hayden Iwobi Gnabry Toral look a little short of talent
    Ok Szcz might come back to replace Cech
    Adelaide will and may be Akpom will find a place.
    A lot will be leaving though, may be half should already be gone.
    Keeping all 3 oldies Flamini Arteta
    and Rosicky hardly seems wise planning.

    1. cech can easily play until he’s 38. Kos can play with gabriel for 4 more years. walcott and jack will stay,that i guarantee you. i agree with the rest.

    2. Why not we close the joint and call it a day? But then again, opinions are like ar$e holes. Everyone has one. I am listening to yours. But that’s all I can do, really.

    3. I agree. As soon as most players hit 30, their arms and legs disintegrate entirely rendering them completely useless. So even though 3/4 of the players you’ve mentioned have showed absolutely no signs of declining. I’m going to agree with one of your imaginary timelines that are based on figments on that beautiful little imagination of yours!! 🙂

  5. The guy shd just accept a reduced role and allow the new generation of players to step in. The guy undoubtedly has leadership skills but evidently he is past his best and that is a fact am sure even arteta himself acknowledge. He shd be the last one to ask for game time notin he is 30+yrs, is our captain and is earnin handsomely. As the arsenal family we shd let go of some of this things and move on!

  6. whether a player over 32 or 33 can play regularly depends on how they take care of their bodyhimself.be it at everton or arsenal,arteta has always come across as a hardworking talented player.so if he can keep up the fitness,theres no reason he cant play another 3years or so.hes got good tactical intelligence,and decent shot too..hope he can play regulalrly !

  7. Who else has seen what Maureen’s daughter wore recently in a pix with him??? Lol!! Funny man, beautiful daughter.

    1. U mean the bra-less outfit – if u got it why not flaunt it….besides i dont think any one would want JM as a father-in-law….

    2. @Gunner………..Wrong…..there are probably over a million male chelshit fans out ere…….Dying for her hand in marriage L()L

      1. thats cause Chelshit fans like it easy…dont have to work hard to take a peep at those tits with that outfit…

  8. @mangatholi maybe 3 or even more yrs elsewhere mate but not at arsenal fc! Alot of 30+yrs players in a team does not guarantee trophies and that’s a plain fact. Alot of our players are now approaching 30 and we shd be thinking of replacements rather than unjustifiably adding them contracts. It funny how we nowdays are more concerned about players’ welfare rather than their actual performances on the pitch!!!

  9. Arteta is one of my favourite players at Arsenal, I hope he retires here-that free kick against Aston Villa in 2012 is unforgettable! Mikel captain my captain.

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