Why Mikel Arteta has Champions League pressure as transfer overhaul leads to ‘no excuses’ claim – Tom Canton

Why Mikel Arteta has Champions League pressure as transfer overhaul leads to ‘no excuses’ claim - Tom Canton

The summer transfer window is now more than two weeks old and Arsenal have become one of the early stars. A nice change of form from the typically frustrating opening period where fingers are crossed tighter than a Takehiro Tomiyasu marking job on Raphinha last month.

It is the aforementioned Raphinha, alongside Gabriel Jesus and Lisandro Martinez, who has caused the stir. The trio are priority targets for Arsenal, who have already agreed to bring Marquinhos, Matt Turner and Fabio Vieira to the club.

This elevation in expectation and subsequent potential upgraded starting XI has led to plenty of opinions perhaps shifting. One that caught the attention of Arsenal supporters was Football 365 writer Jason Soutar, who tweeted that Mikel Arteta would have “zero excuses” next season.

READ MORE: Arsenal news and transfers LIVE: Ballard exit collapses, Raphinha’s Spain trip, Martinez latest

From a personal perspective, I understand the premise of the point and where it comes from. Having spent £150 million last summer and looking to spend a similar amount this year, the squad being nearly entirely constructed of players the Spaniard has bought and the time with the club surpassing three years this Christmas, there’s a strong foundation for success now.

Were Arsenal not to progress from last season I would feel short-changed too. However, there is a glaring reality that is perhaps being missed. Not only is the Arsenal squad going into this summer the sixth most expensive in the league, but there are so many factors that can change the course of a season.

Arsenal should have qualified for the Champions League last season. Were it not for key injuries to both starting full-backs Tomiyasu and Kieran Tierney and arguably the club’s best player Thomas Partey, then I have little doubt three extra points would have been achieved.

Furthermore, before the deals for players such as Jesus, Raphinha and Martinez are confirmed, with no guarantee they all will, is there a need in June to pile the pressure on the coach here? Not for me.

When it comes to the season, if the club underperforms and doesn’t look to have progressed, I’ll be one of the first to have my moment of criticism. However, for now, the business is encouraging and that is what I am going to focus on the praise.

How do you feel about Mikel Arteta and the early setting of expectations before the summer’s business is done? Let us know in the comment section below.


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Source by Football London

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