Interview

How Arteta changed the culture around the club

Mikel Arteta knew it was going to be a big project.

Our head coach arrived midway through December and could see that the energy and culture around the club needed to change.

So just how did Arteta turn our struggling side into Emirates FA Cup champions within eight months?

"The first thing was that I got everyone together, the staff and the players, and I told them what I thought about them and why this wasn't working," he told Arsenal Digital. "If we were going to continue like this, it was never going to work.

"The first thing we had to do was get back all together with the same agenda and with the same intentions. The foundations have to be really strong in order to create something and we started to do that. I explained my view of how we could do it, we could change things and monitor them daily, but we started to apply some things and they really started to work.

"We had to create the right culture for our club and it has to be an environment that first of all everybody has to respect each other, that we have to work together and we have to express the passion and how we lucky we are to be where we are. That's the first one to start with.

"Without that unity, we cannot drive this massive ship that we have to manage with Arsenal, and the expectations that are involved with the club. The moment we started to do that, I started to change a few things that, for me, were really relevant. The players got behind them, the staff got behind them and we started to see some results straight away.

"As well, we have to identify our weaknesses and our strengths, and they have to be aware of our weaknesses. We can have weaknesses that we have to hide but we cannot have weaknesses within our structure of our club.

"Then we have to maximise our strengths, that we have a lot of, and at that moment I didn't believe that we were doing that. We have huge potential, we have no limits, it depends on us not the opponent or other clubs. It depends on our stats and that was something that needed to change, so that's what I was encouraging all the time, to do that."

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