Mikel Arteta has defended Arsenal’s transfer policy after club legend Tony Adams criticised them for signing Martin Odegaard on loan.
The 2020/21 campaign has been a difficult one for the Gunners. But one of the biggest positives from it has been the performances of the likes of Emile Smith Rowe and Bukayo Saka.
Arsenal took the decision to bring in Odegaard on loan during the January transfer window. The Real Madrid midfielder has impressed for the Gunners since his move. This signing has been criticised by Adams as he believed that he would take opportunities away from Smith Rowe and more.
Arteta told Astro SuperSport that having the “right principles” in place is important when recruiting players:
“Well first of all I think you have to set some very clear principles that you want to achieve and the processes that are going to be in place to try to minimise the risk every time we get a player.
“Because it’s like a bet. There are a lot of things that we cannot control and a lot of things that we don’t know how they are going to act.
“But if we have the right processes, and we have the right principles to apply for every single player that walks in through our door to our club, then I think we are in a much better place to make a lot of good decisions.
“When I said to you about the squad balance, it is something that is related to recruitment. First of all the squad has to look in good balance, in good shape, in good health.
“And then you can talk about taking the squad into a different level, improving the recruitment, improving the quality of the squad in the individual and specific positions that we want.
“But as well, part of that recruitment – and it’s huge at this club – is our youth.
“And I am so proud as well with the work that is being done throughout the club, all the coaches at all the stages, to have the quality and the talent that we have at the club.
“So we have to create a space within our squad to give the opportunity to start to fit our first team as well with young players. And that is the key for our future.”