Can Mikel Arteta really save Arsenal?


Mikel Arteta, former Arsenal captain was appointed the coach of the club after the sack of former Sevilla coach, Unai Emery.

Arteta has overseen two trophies since taking over as coach in his slightly over 12 months of reign. The former Manchester City assistant had won the FA Cup over Frank Lampard, and also the Community Shield over Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool.

But this season, as many hoped the Gunners would thrive, especially after the acquisition of Thomas Partey, the team has failed to do so.

Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta and Leno
Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta and Leno

Arsenal fell out of the title challenge since the early weeks of the season, despite winning their first match of the season against Fulham comfortably.

At the end of last year, it seemed like Mikel Arteta was headed for the sack, after a run of over 5 games without victory, before a surprise 3-1 victory over Chelsea on Boxing Day.

Since then, Mikel Arteta seemed to have somewhat steady the sinking ship at Arsenal. Since that Chelsea match on Boxing Day, the Gunners have played eight matches in all competitions, winning six and drawing only two (0-0 draw against Crystal Palace and against Manchester United)

Today’s game against Nuno Espirito Santo’s resilient Wolves reminded many of the failings of this Arsenal side.

Despite the return of talisman Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang, Arteta opted to go with his trusted setup, and it seemed like it was a perfect day after Nicolas Pepe scored in the 32nd minute, until the tackle from David Luiz gifted Wolves the penalty to level before halftime.

Red card to Arsenal's David Luiz
Red card to Arsenal’s David Luiz

Though the red cad on Luiz was harsh, but it is one of the perks of the game.

The Gunners could not deal  with the pressure and finally yielded a second goal, and to compound it all, the Gunners goalkeeper handled the ball outside the area, preventing a goal scoring opportunity.

Arsenal goalkeeper, Leno sent off
Arsenal goalkeeper, Leno sent off

The Gunners have now lost their first match since Boxing day, it appears great on paper as they appeared to have been gaining momentum.

It is more about the nature of the loss, as it reminds everyone of Arsenal team during their slump.

It maybe just a loss in 9 games, but it feels like a run of three losses. At this point, Mikel Arteta should spring up a miracle, because a bad run would mean an end to his job.


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