How Arteta’s Arsenal have become a force to be reckoned with

How Arteta’s Arsenal have become a force to be reckoned with

How Arteta’s Arsenal have become a force to be reckoned with


How Arteta’s Arsenal have become a force to be reckoned with

Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal sit top of the Premier League table after the opening seven games and it is to little surprise. The Spaniard has started to repay the faith the board and the fans have shown in him by leading the Gunners to an almost flawless start earning 18 points from a possible 21 to kickstart their league campaign.

Arteta has got Arsenal back on track, transforming this team into a cohesive unit thanks to his tactical prowess and shrewd recruitment policy. Even after their 100% record was derailed by Erik Ten Hag’s United, the squad is undoubtedly on an upward curve and looks like a team brimming with confidence.

Gone are the days when a result like this threatened to derail all their momentum; there is grit, determination and a hardy mentality to this side that has been absent in years gone by. The former Arsenal captain has experienced plenty of highs and lows in his spell at the Emirates to date but his long-term planning looks set to finally deliver a return to Champions League football for the first time since 2017, and perhaps even an unexpected title challenge.

Their positive start has set the perfect platform for the Gunners to launch a successful season for themselves, but consistency has let them down in recent years and Arteta will have to jump that hurdle if Arsenal are to realize their full potential this campaign.

According to the latest odds on this list of betting apps, Arsenal are 1/2 to finish in the top four this season and wins over the likes of Crystal Palace, Leicester, Bournemouth, Fulham and Aston Villa have helped build momentum heading into the rest of the season as the Gunners continue to reap the rewards of another successful transfer window. The manager has welcomed several high-profile incomings, highlighted by the arrivals of Premier League winners Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko for big money. Jesus in particular arrived with so much promise after years of playing second fiddle in Pep Guardiola’s City side, and has delivered on it. The Brazilian striker already has six goal contributions to his name from the opening six league games, bagging three goals and three assists. He has brought life into Arsenal’s attack and alongside Bukayo Saka and compatriot Gabriel Martinelli, the Gunners look in good shape going forward. Meanwhile at the back Zinchenko has brought some much-needed quality to Arsenal’s defence.

The Spaniard made big moves this summer to ensure his side does not endure a repeat of last year’s downfall, recalling William Saliba from a very successful loan spell with Ligue 1 outfit Marseilles and splashing the cash on the much sought-after Ukrainian defender. The two defenders made an immediate impact with sensational debuts at Selhurst Park, Saliba showing what he is capable of in the English top flight and Zinchenko proving to be a handful from the first whistle. Throw into the mix an exciting prospect in 22-year-old midfielder Fabio Vieira and Arsenal have significantly strengthened in all key areas up and down the pitch.

The careful and meticulous approach to Arsenal’s business in the transfer window and the subsequent shedding of dead weight within the squad exemplifies the scale of the shift under Arteta. The Gunners are the Premier League’s highest spending club during the last three transfer windows, having spent over £300million since the start of summer 2021 but these have been prudent investments. The vast majority of signings have been 23 years old or younger, meaning the manager has allowed room to grow and put his own stamp on their playing style whilst improving their value in the market too under his tutelage. The Spaniard’s nurturing of his young talent is encapsulated by his decision to give Martin Odegaard the captain’s armband. He has been allowed to find his feet in England and settle in his role at Arsenal. It’s always a risk giving a creative player the armband but he is incredibly experienced for his age because of his time at Real Madrid and various loan spells. He offers calmness, attitude, and leadership, and has embodied the resilience of a side that before Arteta came, could barely string a run of three positive results together. He has done an exceptional job of harnessing youthful exuberance with prospects like Emile Smith-Rowe and Bukayo Saka already making waves. His predecessors had failed to reach the North London club’s lofty aspirations through spending on big names to mitigate mounting criticisms. Arteta by contrast is determined to stick to his principles and set Arsenal up for the long-term future over short-term gain. They have stayed the course with his transfer policy and while it has come at great cost it is starting to pay dividends.

 

It was a difficult start to managerial life at the Emirates for the 40-year-old, even last season there were clear struggles; three defeats to start the campaign and their Champions League charge went off the rails within touching distance of the finish line. However, his three years under Pep Guardiola have undoubtedly helped him overcome adversity since and there are some distinctive traits of that City side that have submerged into Arteta’s philosophy. A possession-based game focused on moving the ball and pressing hard when off the ball are all features that have helped City dominate in the last four seasons. But aside from helping him iron out the kinks in his tactical naivety, perhaps the most significant trait Guardiola has indoctrinated Arteta with is a resolve and passion for the game that has clearly filtered down through his young squad. There is a standard to be met and if you do not reach it then you are left at the door. His handling of the Aubameyang saga was the perfect statement of intent and Arsenal have gone from strength to strength buying into that ethos. On the pitch however, to get to that next level, they will need to do better against the teams that finished above them. They picked up six points from their eight matches against Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea and Spurs and need a better return this term. They have had a good window and start, but it is a long season. If they can break that top four it will allow them to bring in a few more pieces of the puzzle and push on to be competitive at the next level. If they can get a trophy along the way that would be a bonus, but the priority is Champions League football.

 

 


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