Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has today opened up on the club’s plans for the winter window, as the pressure continues to mount on the under-fire Spaniard.
Trouble at the Emirates
It is safe to say that Arsenal’s campaign, to this point, has not exactly gone according to plan.
The Gunners no doubt headed into the new season brimming with confidence, eyeing up a return to the Premier League’s top-4, along with a deep European run.
This came with the capital giants having of course secured an FA Cup and Community Shield double in August, amid suggestions that the Arteta project was finally primed to pay dividends.
The months since, however, have seen Arsenal fail to live up to expectations in any way, shape or form.
Incredibly, the north Londoners currently sit 15th in the Premier League table, on the back of just 4 wins from their opening 14 fixtures.
A grand total of 12 goals scored, meanwhile, means that Arsenal – a club once widely heralded for their attractive attacking style – have been outscored by all but 3 of the clubs in the English top-flight in 2020/21.
‘Know what we want to do’
As such, it almost goes without saying that something has to change at the Emirates, and fast.
As the Gunners slip closer to being dragged into a genuine relegation dogfight, the club’s fans have made their feelings crystal clear, with many having called for Mikel Arteta to be sacked.
As things stand, however, such a course of action looks firmly off the table, with widespread recent reports having assured that the Spaniard maintains the full backing of the Arsenal board:
🗣 “They will give him a lot longer, but we know in football you believe in someone until you don’t.”@David_Ornstein says he thinks Arsenal will back Arteta for a while longer yet, but things are not good enough currently.
Watch Super Sunday Matchday on Sky Sports News 📺 pic.twitter.com/z0X1Maeuzx
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) December 20, 2020
In turn, the focus has since shifted to the January transfer window.
Arteta’s squad, whilst unquestionably under-performing, nevertheless remains in dire need of reinforcement.
Amid Mesut Ozil’s continued absence, a midfield presence capable of both creating for his teammates and scoring goals himself has been widely pinpointed as the no.1 demand on the part of the Arsenal faithful.
A new right-back also looks a possibility, whilst further reinforcement in the middle of the park will be required if the under-fire Granit Xhaka is moved on.
Whatever the case may be, though, when it comes to the Gunners’ winter window, the overall plan of action has already been put in place.
Speaking in a press conference ahead of his side’s crunch League Cup meeting with Manchester City, Mikel Arteta was today drawn on the club’s prospects for January.
And the Arsenal boss went on to explain:
‘The planning is done, what we want to do in January and in the summer.’
‘Sometimes you can do it, sometimes not depending on a lot of factors. Edu is dealing with that at the moment and I’m focused with all the games, we don’t have much time to spend energy now on that because it’s very clear what we want to do.’
‘My job is to make the most out of this squad, the players that we have. We know what we want to do and we will try to execute it knowing that the actual context, market and what we’ve been through makes it’s difficult.’
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|2||Leicester City FC||14||9||27|
|3||Manchester United FC||13||7||26|
|6||Tottenham Hotspur FC||14||11||25|
|8||Manchester City FC||13||7||23|
|9||Aston Villa FC||12||11||22|
|10||West Ham United FC||14||2||21|
|11||Wolverhampton Wanderers FC||14||-5||20|
|12||Newcastle United FC||13||-5||18|
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|17||Brighton & Hove Albion FC||14||-6||12|
|19||West Bromwich Albion||14||-19||7|
|20||Sheffield United FC||14||-17||2|
|Salah, Mohamed||Liverpool FC||13|
|Son, Heung Min||Tottenham Hotspur FC||11|
|Vardy, Jamie||Leicester City FC||11|
|Calvert-Lewin, Dominic||Everton FC||11|
|Kane, Harry||Tottenham Hotspur FC||9|
|Fernandes, Bruno||Manchester United FC||9|
|Bamford, Patrick||Leeds United||9|
|Wilson, Callum||Newcastle United FC||8|
|Zaha, Wilfried||Crystal Palace FC||7|
|Ings, Danny||Southampton FC||6|
|Watkins, Ollie||Aston Villa FC||6|
|Grealish, Jack||Aston Villa FC||5|
|Rashford, Marcus||Manchester United FC||5|
|Firmino, Roberto||Liverpool FC||5|
|Mane, Sadio||Liverpool FC||5|
|Abraham, Tammy||Chelsea FC||5|
|Jota, Diogo||Liverpool FC||5|
|Werner, Timo||Chelsea FC||4|
|Adams, Che||Southampton FC||4|
|Ward-Prowse, James||Southampton FC||4|
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|Romeu, Oriol||Southampton FC||0||5|
|Bellerin, Hector||Arsenal FC||0||5|
|Cash, Matty||Aston Villa FC||0||5|
|Bissouma, Yves||Brighton & Hove Albion FC||1||4|
|Evans, Jonny||Leicester City FC||0||5|
|Egan, John||Sheffield United FC||1||4|
|Ward-Prowse, James||Southampton FC||0||4|
|McGinn, John||Aston Villa FC||0||4|
|Klich, Mateusz||Leeds United||0||4|
|Doucoure, Abdoulaye||Everton FC||0||4|
|Berge, Sander||Sheffield United FC||0||4|
|Phillips, Kalvin||Leeds United||0||4|
|Gallagher, Conor||West Bromwich Albion||0||4|
|Mendy, Nampalys||Leicester City FC||0||4|
|Lundstram, John||Sheffield United FC||1||3|
|Dunk, Lewis||Brighton & Hove Albion FC||1||3|
|Milivojevic, Luka||Crystal Palace FC||1||3|
|Fuchs, Christian||Leicester City FC||0||4|
|Hayden, Isaac||Newcastle United FC||0||4|
|Kane, Harry||Tottenham Hotspur FC||10|
|Grealish, Jack||Aston Villa FC||6|
|De Bruyne, Kevin||Manchester City FC||6|
|Fernandes, Bruno||Manchester United FC||5|
|Robertson, Andrew||Liverpool FC||5|
|Son, Heung Min||Tottenham Hotspur FC||4|
|Rashford, Marcus||Manchester United FC||4|
|Werner, Timo||Chelsea FC||4|
|Adams, Che||Southampton FC||4|
|Harrison, Jack||Leeds United||4|
|McGinn, John||Aston Villa FC||4|
|Cresswell, Aaron||West Ham United FC||4|
|Digne, Lucas||Everton FC||4|
|Salah, Mohamed||Liverpool FC||3|
|Vardy, Jamie||Leicester City FC||3|
|Ings, Danny||Southampton FC||3|
|Firmino, Roberto||Liverpool FC||3|
|Ward-Prowse, James||Southampton FC||3|
|Rodriguez, James||Everton FC||3|
|Chilwell, Benjamin||Chelsea FC||3|