Press conference

Arteta - How I assess my first year in charge

Saturday will make exactly one year since Mikel Arteta took charge at the club, so how does he reflect on a tumultuous 12 months?

"I think it has been one of the most challenging years in the club’s history for many, many different reasons," he said.


"I think we have made a lot of progress and implanted a lot of positive things that have worked really well. We have gone through structural changes right across the club that has obviously shaken the club, big time.


"I would say the highlights of the year are the two trophies that we have won together, and the most disappointing thing is that we haven’t had our fans with us to take us through this difficult moment.


"I think it could have been a really, really positive year but the recent form in the Premier League is taking the gloss off what we have done in the calendar year. But we have to accept that our Premier League form in recent weeks is not good enough for this football club."


So is the job bigger - and tougher - than Mikel expected when he took over?


"I know how difficult the job is in normal conditions when you get to a club that goes through what we have had to go through in a year, and on top of that we have a pandemic that is affecting the whole industry," he said.


"The way that you can even live your profession and then do what you want to do normally is even more challenging. But this is what we have.


"At the same time, I am telling you I love what I do, I feel so lucky and privileged to represent this football club and the circumstances and context that is in this moment are where they are, and we have to face them because there is no other choice."

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