Mikel Arteta outlines his Arsenal priority and sends warning to wantaway stars
Mikel Arteta has warned any Arsenal player who isn’t fully invested in his rebuilding project will have no future at the club. Nearly a month on from Unai Emery’s sacking, the club’s former captain was confirmed as his Spanish compatriot’s permanent successor on Friday.
Arteta sat in the opposition dugout in his role as Manchester City assistant last Sunday as the Premier League champions cantered to a routine 3-0 victory. The 37-year-old admitted he felt a certain sadness watching the team he represented with such distinction for five years offer such little resistance and noted the lack of energy both from the players and fans in the stands.
News of his impending appointment was said to have been met with a mixed response from the first team squad, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s brother revealing his dismay at the north London club’s decision to employ a new head coach with no management experience under his belt.
Aubameyang, the club’s top scorer and current skipper, is among a number of senior players said to be contemplating their futures but Arteta warned anyone who isn’t on board with his ideas and philosophy will be given short shrift. ‘If I wouldn’t feel ready and prepared for this I wouldn’t be sitting in this chair,’ he said at his first press conference.
‘The first priority is to change the energy. Last week I was here with Manchester City and I felt a little bit down. ‘I want to get everybody in the club with the same mindset. We have to build a culture that sustains the rest.
‘My job is to convince everybody that this is how we’re going to live. If you’re going to be part of this organisation it’s going to be this way. ‘We need the fans. We need to engage them, to transmit our behaviour and intention. That’s the only way they’ll give us a little bit and we’ll feel that connection. ‘When you’re outside this football club you look at it and think wow, this is massive.’