Edu overruled Mikel Arteta to complete Arsenal transfer

Mikel Arteta was overruled by Edu during the summer transfer window, according to reports in France, with Arsenal choosing to sign Thomas Partey over Houssem Aouar.

Arteta had made Aouar his top priority and told the club he would prefer a deal for the Lyon midfielder rather than Partey.

However, it was Partey who was signed from Atletico Madrid after technical director Edu expressed his preference for the Ghana international.

L’Equipe claims that Edu’s word ‘obviously had more weight’ as his preference was prioritised over the manager’s.

Partey has featured three times since being signed in a £45million deal on deadline day.

But talks had been ongoing with Lyon throughout the summer over a potential move for Aouar.

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas was critical of Arsenal for not matching their valuation for the midfielder before refusing to sell him in the final days of the window.

Arsenal, however, were willing to splash that money on Partey instead despite Aouar reportedly being his preference.

That said, Arteta seems happy enough with his new man.

After a 2-1 win over Rapid Vienna, Arteta said of Partey’s first start in an Arsenal shirt: ‘I was really impressed because he looked really confident.

‘He grabbed the game in the most difficult period, he took responsibility, he was really comfortable on the ball, he made a lot of right decisions, he was really strong in the challenges in every transition moment.’

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Martin Keown says Arteta is making the SAME mistakes as Unai Emery

‘They keep changing from one system to another’: Martin Keown says Mikel Arteta is making the SAME mistakes as Unai Emery at Arsenal and failure to adapt is leaving side ‘static’ and ‘without rhythm’

  • Arsenal slipped to 10th in the league after 1-0 defeat to Leicester at the Emirates
  • The Gunners struggled to create clear cut chances in their defeat to the Foxes
  • Martin Keown believes Mikel Arteta is the right man to take the Arsenal forward 
  • But the club’s ex-defender feels Arteta is making the same errors as Unai Emery 

Mikel Arteta is making the same mistakes as his predecessor at the Emirates, Unai Emery, according to Martin Keown.

The ex-Gunners defender was left unimpressed after the north London club lost 1-0 at home to Leicester City on Sunday.  

Arsenal are now 10th in the Premier League after Jamie Vardy’s winner condemned them to their third defeat of the season, on a night they struggled to create anything of note in the final third.

Mikel Arteta’s tactics are being called into question after back to back Premier League defeats

Martin Keown believes Arteta is making too many changes and that the Gunners lack rhythm

Since Arteta took the reins at the Emirates in December of last year he has made vast changes to the side he inherited, however Keown, who made 332 appearances for the club, believes Artta has tinkered too much with his team of late. 

Emery, who was appointed Arsenal manager in 2018 was sacked after 18 months, often had the same criticism of making too many changes levelled at him and Keown is urging Arteta to learn from those mistakes, rather than repeat them.

‘They keep changing from one system to another and they did this with Emery,’ Keown told Stadium Astro. 

Jamie Vardy scored the only goal of the game as Leicester beat Arsenal at the Emirates

‘If you keep changing it, you don’t find a rhythm, and that’s something that I found in a very successful team. 

‘It was like putting an old pair of slippers on for a game. Everything was there. You’d fire it into midfield to Patrick Vieira, into Dennis Bergkamp, (Thierry) Henry into the channel; it was three passes.

‘These players now are getting the ball now and it’s jamming a little bit, so I think keep it simple and start building from this team. If this is the way he wants to play, keep with it, and try to put the people in it and get the messages right and work on it.

Keown bemoaned the ‘static’ nature of the attack, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang kept quiet

‘It was very static, the front three never really moved from positions, they didn’t make themselves available.’

Arteta has had a great start to his Arsenal managerial career, winning the FA Cup last season and securing the Community Shield in August and Keown believes he is the right man to continue to take the club forward providing he can bounce back quickly from set-backs. 

‘This is a brand new project for the manager. We don’t want to be over-critical,’ he added. ‘I believe he’s the right man for the job 100 per cent, super-bright manager and he’s going to have set-backs, it’s how he responds to this now.’

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Mikel Arteta criticises Arsenal forwards after defeat to Leicester City

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta rued his side’s charity in front of goal after Leicester City’s 1-0 win at the Emirates.

The Gunners controlled proceedings in the first half but they failed to find an opener, with Alexandre Lacazette particularly guilty of squandering good openings for the hosts.

The Frenchman thought he’d broken the deadlock when he headed past Kasper Schmeichel from a corner but the goal was disallowed after Granit Xhaka was adjudged to have been in an offside position.

Jamie Vardy started on the bench for the Foxes but he entered the game on the hour mark and he found a winner 15 minutes from time when Leicester cut Arsenal open in a well worked move.

‘It’s very difficult to create chances against ten men behind the ball,’ said Arteta.

‘In those spaces we saw what they did against Manchester City. I was expecting them to do it but we had open situations where we should have finished better.

‘It comes down to two or three chances that you are going to have. When you have those moments you have to take them and not make mistakes at the back.’

Arteta was critical of the referee’s decision to overturn Lacazette’s opener and the Spaniard says he doesn’t know ‘how the hell’ it was disallowed.

‘I think the first half we had the game in our hands,’ said Arteta.

‘We create enough chances to go in front. We score a goal that I don’t know how the hell it was disallowed.

‘Second half it was a case of being patient and waiting for the right moment against a team that wanted to defend really deep, that didn’t have any shots on targets and were just waiting for a mistake to hit you on the break.

‘The moment that we had a minimal mistake with no pressure on the ball trying to step in they caught us with the space in the back and we lost the game.’

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Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta says criticism comes with the territory for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta insists he is not surprised by any criticism levelled at captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as the forward is expected to score in every game he plays.

The 31-year-old has been Arsenal’s talisman in front of goal since his arrival in January 2018 but he had gone four matches without scoring until hitting the winner in Thursday’s 2-1 Europa League victory at Rapid Vienna.

Having started the season with fine strikes against Liverpool in the Community Shield and on the opening day of the Premier League campaign at Fulham, Aubameyang then drew a blank.

He also struggled for goalscoring opportunities in wins over West Ham and Sheffield United and, more notably, during defeats at Liverpool and Manchester City.

Aubameyang has scored 19 goals in 29 appearances for Arsenal since Arteta’s appointment in December but, despite that record, the Spaniard is not shocked to see people find fault in the forward’s game.

“Expectations for him are that he has to score a goal every game,” he said.

“So this comes with the nature of the big player that he is, what he has done in the past. People expect that from him in the future.

“We are here to help him with that, and we will support him when difficult times come around him.

“He needs to get in more goalscoring opportunities, he needs to get the ball more round the box, in order to do what he is able to do.”

Arteta also pointed to the calibre of recent opposition has led to Aubameyang having more of a struggle in front of goal.

“If you look at our fixtures we have already played five games out of seven against top, top opposition,” he said.

“It is the same for him or (Manchester City striker) Sergio Aguero, who didn’t have a shot on target as well on the weekend. It is not an isolation of just our player.”

Aubameyang has been largely deployed on the left flank in recent months by Arteta, a move which saw the Gabon international flourish in the big games – scoring a brace in both the FA Cup semi-final win over City and Chelsea in the final.

Arteta moved him into a central position during the recent win over Sheffield United and knows there will always be questions asked of decisions.

“That is always going to happen,” he replied when asked about calls for Aubameyang to play through the middle.

“The moment he does not score, he needs to play as a number nine.

“If you play him as a nine, why don’t you keep him on the left because he has been so successful on the left. Its going to happen, I know.”


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Tony Adams claims Arteta has 'problems' with Arsenal star after Man City loss

Tony Adams believes Mikel Arteta has ‘problems’ with Hector Bellerin and has urged the Arsenal manager to switch to a back four after the defeat to Manchester City.

The Gunners were beaten 1-0 at the Etihad Stadium as Raheem Sterling’s first-half goal was enough to secure victory for Pep Guardiola’s side.

Arteta opted to start with a 3-4-3 with David Luiz, Gabriel Magalhaes and Kieran Tierney playing in a three-man defence.

Bellerin, meanwhile, played on the right flank but rarely got the opportunity to press forward as City dominated possession.

And Adams believes now is the time for Arteta to decide on a centre-back partner for Gabriel and move to a traditional four-man defence.

‘I think it’s time for a back four. I’ve been saying it since the start of the season,’ Adams told Premier League Productions.

‘It wins you cup games, it doesn’t win you league titles. If he wants to build for the future.

‘I think he’s got problems with Hector, I think his defending today wasn’t very good at all.

‘But I’d like him to go to a back four. They’ve got Gabriel now, get him a partnership.

‘They’ve been unlucky at the start with Holding going down but get them into a back four.

‘They look like they’ve a holding midfielder now who’s got a bit of presence and build for the future.’

Adams also believes Bellerin and goalkeeper Bernd Leno were at fault for Sterling’s goal in the 23rd minute.

‘Arsenal have pressed them and they’ve played around the press very well,’ said the former Arsenal captain.

‘Hector Bellerin again, and the goalkeeper, I always look at it defensively.

‘Man City were too good, they passed it around, he [Phil Foden] steps inside Hector too easy. The goalkeeper is pushing it into the danger zone, you’ve got to push it away out of the danger zone, and he’s [Sterling] had a tap-in, which is disappointing.’

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Mikel Arteta speaks out after Arsenal miss out on Houssem Aouar transfer

Mikel Arteta insists Arsenal’s hierarchy are ‘doing their maximum’ to improve the squad after missing out on a deal to sign Lyon midfielder Houssem Aouar

The Gunners were dealt a blow this weekend as Aouar, one of their priority targets for the window, decided to stay at Lyon.

Arsenal had multiple bids for Aouar turned down by Lyon as the French club sttod firm over their €60m (£55.5m) asking price.

Arsenal’s other primary midfield target, Thomas Partey, also looks set to stay at Atletico Madrid with the Spanish club demanding that the midfielder’s €50 million (£45.3m) release clause is met.

Chelsea’s Jorginho is also on Arsenal’s shortlist as Arteta is keen to strengthen his midfielder before the transfer deadline.

When asked if he believes Arsenal will complete any more signings before the window closes, Arteta said after his side’s 2-1 win over Sheffield United on Sunday: ‘Well, I don’t know.

‘What I can guarantee is that we are doing our maximum for that to happen. Whether we’re going to achieve it or not, I don’t know.’

Asked if he is keen to sign a new midfielder, Arteta said: ‘I cannot discuss the players that we want but we recognise some positions that we believe we are short, first of all in numbers and then different qualities to complement each other, this is what we’re trying to do.’

When asked if Arsenal are prepared if they fail to add to their squad before the end of the window, Arteta replied: ‘I think that even when I’m here trying to be honest, I’m clear.

‘Believe me, believe me, the ownership, the board, Edu and myself are doing everything we can to maximise the resources we have to improve the team and sustain and keep the players that are in this club to make this club successful.

‘I have 100 per cent backing from them. And it’s not just words, it’s reality. Whoever knows me, if it wasn’t like that I wouldn’t say that. But I say it because I feel it and it’s true.

‘Whatever we can do, whether it’s ourselves or the owners, they are willing to do it to support us, to back us, because I feel they believe in what we are trying to do.’

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Arteta has studied Sheffield Utd's playing style for past two years

‘It is remarkable what they have done’: Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta reveals he has studied Sheffield United’s playing style for the past TWO years… and is full of praise for Blades manager Chris Wilder ahead of Sunday’s clash

  • Sheffield Utd impressed many last season with their style of play in the top-flight
  • Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta admitted he is a fan of Chris Wilder’s management
  • Arteta added that he has been analysing the Blades for the past two seasons
  • The Gunners host Sheffield United in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon 

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has revealed he began studying Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United while they were still in the Championship after being tipped off about their overlapping centre backs and fighting spirit.

The two sides meet at the Emirates on Sunday, with United looking to add to the four points they took off Arsenal in a stunning first season back in the Premier League.

Wilder’s side have struggled so far in this campaign – they sit second bottom after three straight defeats – but Arteta remains hugely impressed by the work of his opposite number.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has been studying Sheffield United for the past two seasons

Chris Wilder’s side impressed onlookers last season but have struggled so far in this campaign

‘I started to analyse his team two years to understand some of the things he was doing and I think him and the coaching staff have done a really, really good job,’ he said.

‘Not just for the way the play because it is a very clear style, but for the culture they created around the club and this feeling that you can sense around the team and how they compete. I think it is remarkable what they have done.’

Arteta added: ‘I was told by someone that we had to have a look at them, and I always like to see different trends, different ways of playing, formations, structures, patterns, and I was impressed with some of the things they were doing. It is always good to have this information.’

Arsenal continued their impressive development under the Spaniard with victory at Liverpool in the Carabao Cup on Thursday night.

They head into Sunday’s meeting with Sheffield United as heavy favourites but Arteta remains under no illusions about the threat Wilder’s side pose – despite their difficult start.

Arsenal beat Liverpool on penalties on Thursday to progress to the Carabao Cup quarter-finals

‘The margins in the league of winning, drawing and losing are really small and the details are crucial. But they have generated big chances every game and they’ve been really unlucky in my opinion not to get anything out of those games,’ he said.

‘We have experience of playing against them both in the Premier League and in the FA Cup so we know how difficult it is to play against them. 

‘The season they had, the way they have evolved as a team since they joined the Premier League has been unbelievable, the work that the manager has done with the coaching staff with the resources they have is remarkable. We need to be really alert and we have to play at our best again.’ 

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Arteta reveals what he told Maitland-Niles after nonchalant penalty vs Liverpool

Mikel Arteta has jokingly admitted he told Ainsley Maitland-Niles that his nonchalant penalty style is going to give him heart attack as the defender casually tucked away his spot-kick in Arsenal’s shootout victory over Liverpool.

The Gunners secured their place in the quarter-final of the Carabao Cup, getting the better of Jurgen Klopp’s side at Anfield on penalties.

Liverpool had plenty of chances in the second half, but Bernd Leno made several key saves to keep his side in the game, and as the match finished 0-0 in normal time, a penalty shootout was required to separate the two sides.

After Leno saved Divock Origi’s spot-kick, it was Maitland Niles’ job to take his side’s fourth penalty, and in his usual laid-back style, the 23-year-old practically walked up to the spot and side-footed the ball into the net.

German Leno went on to make another save from Harry Wilson, before Joe Willock’s effort crept under Adrian to send the Gunners through to the quarters.

After the game, Arteta revealed Maitland-Niles’ penalty style had his heart rate through the roof.

‘I told him in the dressing room that I’m going to have a heart attack because with his body language… Jesus Christ,’ the Spaniard said.

‘He puts it in the net which is the reason why he was one of the subs.’

Arsenal were unlucky to draw Manchester City in the next round of the competition, as Arteta goes up against former mentor Pep Guardiola again.

The Gunners got the better of City in last season’s FA Cup semi-finals, and the Spanish boss will be hoping his side can put in a similarly strong performance when the two sides meet again in the Carabao Cup quarter-final.

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