Arteta’s ‘nonsense’ Arsenal ploy ‘only a winning manager gets away’ with bemuses pundit – ‘strange’
Graeme Souness has been left bemused by Mikel Arteta’s ‘extremely strange’ decision to bring Arsenal’s ‘home comforts’ with them to away games.
Arteta was under pressure heading into this season as Arsenal narrowly missed out on the top four in 2021/22.
But the Gunners have surpassed all expectations this campaign as they are currently sitting pretty at the top of the Premier League.
They will move eight points clear of Manchester City if they beat London rivals Crystal Palace at the Emirates on Sunday afternoon.
Last time out in the Premier League, Arsenal brushed aside a sub-par Fulham at Craven Cottage as Arteta’s side ran out 3-0 winners.
Arsenal have 11 wins, one draw and two losses from their 14 away league games this season. Earlier this month, The Daily Mail reported that the Premier League leaders ‘are taking their home comforts on the road’.
This report emerged after Arsenal’s squad posed with a replica of the clock which is positioned above the Clock End at the Emirates in the dressing room after their 3-0 victory over Fulham.
The report added: ‘Sportsmail can reveal the unexpected move is part of an innovative wider plan from within the Gunners squad to make away dressing rooms feel more like the Emirates.
‘In addition to the replica clock – wall stickers of the Arsenal badge and a poster of the official squad photo was also placed on the walls of the away dressing room at Craven Cottage to give it a more familiar feel.’
Unsurprisingly, this act has baffled Souness. He thinks ‘only a winning manager can get away with that’.
‘I read the story about Arsenal taking their home comforts into opposition dressing rooms and had to read it again to make sure it wasn’t a joke,’ Souness wrote for The Daily Mail.
‘Really? Is this what the modern game has become? So Arsenal players arrive at Fulham to find their own clock is on the wall along with their own pictures and stickers?
‘It’s extremely strange and only a winning manager can get away with that. The Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is doing a fine job but he has form for such nonsense.
‘Last season he had You’ll Never Walk Alone played over the loudspeakers at training to prepare his players for a game at Anfield. They lost 4-0, so that went well for them.
‘When I walked into an opposing dressing room I didn’t want to feel comfortable. I didn’t want to feel like I was in my living room at home. I was at work. I was on enemy territory and I wanted to feel fired up.
‘If I had arrived at an away ground to find a clock from Anfield waiting for me on the wall, I would have burst out laughing. And I would not have been alone.’
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