Arsenal was humiliated in London Friday night, losing 3-0 to Crystal Palace. Former Arsenal player Paul Merson has come out to defend Mikel Arteta
Patrick Vieira has had a fantastic start to his management career at Crystal Palace, taking the Eagles to ninth place in the Premier League after last night’s victory over Southampton, Aston Villa, and Leicester City.For Arsenal, though, this is simply another illustration of the Gunners’ shortcomings this season, and the outcome is pushing them further away from a Champions League spot.Arsenal, who are currently fifth in the Premier League, needed to make the most of their two games in hand over London rivals Tottenham Hotspur if they were to finish fourth.
They just have one game left to differentiate themselves from Antonio Conte’s team. Perhaps a different result would have occurred if their former player Vieira had been on the pitch instead of in the opponent’s dugout, but instead, Jean-Philippe Mateta, Jordan Ayew, and Wilfried Zaha achieved a surprising victory for the Eagles.
What did Gary Neville say?
“”I genuinely like Mikel Arteta, I think he’s a terrific coach,”” the former Manchester United captain remarked at a Sky Bet event. In terms of the young players on the team, I believe they’re excellent.
“”My issue is that if Arsenal finishes fourth this season – which, to be honest, I believe is 50/50, and I still think there’s a long way to go in that race – but if they finish fourth, that’s as good as it gets in some ways.””
Where can Arsenal go with Pep (Guardiola), (Jurgen) Klopp, Man United, and Chelsea? They won’t be able to compete.
“”Mikel Arteta is an outstanding coach.”” I like that we’re seeing a team that he’s getting the most out of – I can see how he wants to play, and we can all see how he wants to play.
“”However, when he gets to fourth, he’ll probably say, ‘okay, that’s the best I can accomplish there, I’m going now and finding my next job.'””
What was Paul Merson’s response?
Paul Merson, who played for Arsenal from 1985 to 1997 and made 327 league games, has defended his old club’s current manager, claiming that Arteta is ‘creating a team’ that may fight for trophies in the coming years, especially if Guardiola or Klopp depart Liverpool.
“”Not really, not with the team he’s got,”” Merson told Sky Sports when asked if he shares Neville’s fears. At Arsenal, I believe he is putting together a team.
“”If you looked at the team and saw that they were all 30, you’d believe you’d have to come here.”” “”You’ve completed your mission; now leave.”” This team, on the other hand, is only going to get better. I believe they will go back to the market in the summer transfer window and sign more young players, as well as a new centre-forward.
“”I believe they’re stuck in a rut.”” Klopp and Guardiola are unlikely to be at Liverpool and Man City in a few years. Chelsea will be a force for the next few years, but I’m not convinced they’ll be able to keep it up until the players’ contracts expire (under new owners).
“”If you’re Arsenal and Arteta, you’ll have to wait and be patient.””