Why Does Mikel Arteta Avoid Scrutiny When Arsenal are Light Years away from Winning the Premier League?

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Watching Mikel Arteta perform in his technical area during Arsenal’s recent Carabao Cup win over Leeds United made for humorous viewing. Admirably, the Spaniard kicked every ball with his team and urged them on like an overzealous dad on the side of the pitch during sports day.

It was quite an eye-opener, in actual fact, as Leeds were on top for most of the first half and when any visiting team is in the ascendency at the Emirates, you can often hear a pin drop. When this is the case, like it was against Leeds, it obviously gives you insight into what Arteta was instructing his team to do.

These antics carried on for around an hour before Arsenal scored, which led to the stadium finally finding its voice. This development naturally meant you could no longer hear the shrill Spaniard but, when you did eventually leave the Emirates at full-time, you were left thinking that for all the frantic hand gestures and flustered commands, Arsenal were actually quite poor. Now before anyone takes great exception to that, they only need to look at the latest Premier League betting with Betfair to see the Gunners at 799/1 on the exchange to win the league. In other words, the view that Arsenal flatter to deceive is a shared one.

With this being the case, the question has to be: why does Arteta seem to get a free pass despite his team treading as much if not more water than Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s crisis-hit Manchester United? You can only imagine it is because he won the FA Cup in 2020, which has somehow earned Arteta the right to avoid having the spotlight shone on him too brightly.


Since then, though, Arsenal have finished in eighth position in the league during his first full season in charge and currently lie tenth overall after nine games in the 2021/2022 season.

Arsenal’s rather modest position in the table needs to be taken with some context and that is that Arteta was given £150 million to spend over the summer. That sum was on the back of spending £77 million the season before, so you could say that, after spending close to £230 million, Arsenal should perhaps be, at the very least, in the Europa League places. Time is obviously on Arteta’s side in this regard but, then again, as the Leeds game revealed, there seems to be a lot of energy to his management style without much end product. That makes you wonder if the 39-year-old is the man to lead Arsenal back to the prosperous days of old.


Of course, Arteta can get away with this haphazard style against teams like Leeds but, when they play some of the league’s big hitters, it often gets ugly as Manchester City proved with a 5-0 win in August.

And this is where the Arteta conundrum lies because, up the M1 at Old Trafford, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been found to have a similar problem, which has sparked global calls for his head. Yet, here we are with Mikel Arteta carrying on unscathed in his technical area with flamboyant hand signals but no real idea of how to win the Premier League. It’s all a bit baffling.

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