By our reporter
Mikel Arteta has Arsenal in “good shape” with Arsene Wenger insisting he has no wish to replace the Spaniard in the Gunners hotseat.
Arsenal currently sit rock bottom of the Premier League after a wretched start. They have lost all three games and shipped nine goals, without response, in the process. It’s led to calls that the clock is already ticking on Arteta’s reign.
Furthermore, the pressure is on for Arteta to deliver having spent £144m on new players this summer. That fee left them as the summer’s top spenders in the Premier League.
They brought in the likes of Martin Odegaard, Ben White and Aaron Ramsdale for hefty fees. They then finished deadline day off by securing the signing of Takehiro Tomiyasu from Bologna.
And while Arsenal seem unlikely to reclaim that top-four place everyone at the club is craving, Wenger seems relaxed about the situation.
Furthermore, he insists Arteta has Arsenal moving in the right direction despite claims he could be sacked.
“Today the club is in good shape,” Wenger told Bild Live. “They had two tough games [against Chelsea and Man City], the team has potential and I hope they can come back.”
Arteta’s regime faces what is probably a must-win game when they tackle Norwich after the international break. After that, they tackle Burnley and then face Tottenham in the north London derby.
And a return of three wins can quickly turn things around for the under-fire Spaniard. Nonetheless, reports have suggested that Arsenal’s owners have potential candidates in mind to step in should things fail to improve.
Speculation has suggested Wenger could be asked to return if Arteta though is sacked. That’s not a thought the Frenchman is entertaining, however.
“I’m 71. I’ve given this club the best years of my life,” added Wenger. “At the moment I’m just a fan,” he answered when asked about replacing Arteta.
Despite seemingly retaining support at Arsenal, pundit and former Arsenal star Paul Merson insists Arteta is a man under increasing pressure. And he reckons he could lose his job by October if there’s no signs of improvement.
“Mikel Arteta will have til the October international,” Merson commented. “If they haven’t done anything by then he will be under pressure.
“Chelsea, Man City would I expect Arsenal to beat them? No. Is there a way to get beat by them? Yes, and the Man City game wasn’t good.”
Ten things you didn’t know about England’s next opponent Andorra
Arteta reflects on Arsenal transfers
Arsenal were in action during the week when they beat Brentford 4-0 in a behind-closed-doors friendly at London Colney.
Two goals from Cedric Soares, and one each for Gabriel Magalhaes and Alexandre Lacazette secured the win.
And after the match, Arteta reflected on his club’s summer transfer business.
“It was a really complicated market,” Arteta admitted.
“We had a lot of things to do, I think we had 16 or 17 transactions in total, which is a lot. The club has made a big effort.
“We had support from the owners to try to do it and we had to recruit in the terms that we could, and I am very pleased.”