EPL

Arteta would have liked Wenger guidance at Arsenal

By Sports Desk September 18, 2022

Mikel Arteta would have liked the chance to take advice from his former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, but has praised the legacy left behind by the Frenchman in north London.

Wenger, who joined the Gunners from Nagoya Grampus Eight in 1996, led the club over a two-decade-plus period that saw them emerge as one of the leading sides in European football.

Since his exit in 2018, however, he has seldom held a presence around the club, unlike former rival Alex Ferguson who has remained closely involved with Manchester United.

Speaking ahead of his side's Premier League clash with Brentford, Arteta - a two-time FA Cup winner under Wenger during five seasons as a player at Arsenal - acknowledged he wished he could have taken his expertise.

"I would have loved to have had him closer to have the opportunity to open up and in certain periods just listen and learn from him and everything he has been through," he told the Mirror.

"But he did it in a way to make sure that whoever comes after him had the respect and space he believed was important, and he honoured that."

With five wins and just one loss from their first six top-flight games this term, victory against Brentford could catapult Arsenal back to the summit, ahead of Manchester City and Tottenham.

Much of their success has come from the imposing presence of goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, who is anticipated to be in line to start England's Nations League games with Italy and Germany later this month.

With usual Three Lions keeper Jordan Pickford out injured, there is a chance for Ramsdale to stake a claim for the Qatar 2022 World Cup, and Arteta says it would be a fitting prize for his performances.

"I hope [Ramsdale] is the [England] number one, it will be great for us and it will be great for Aaron," he added. "He has shown in the last year or so what he is capable of doing.

"We will be watching and waiting for that decision. Aaron is pretty confident. It would be a good reward for him and what he has done."

Related items

  • Grant McCann hails ‘outstanding’ response as Doncaster close on play-off spot Grant McCann hails ‘outstanding’ response as Doncaster close on play-off spot

    Grant McCann was a proud man after Doncaster won 4-1 at Colchester to register a 10th straight victory and move into the play-off places.

    Colchester took a ninth-minute lead through Jayden Fevrier, who converted Tom Hopper’s cross at the far post, but remain in relegation danger after Rovers’ emphatic comeback.

    Luke Molyneux equalised after collecting Jamie Sterry’s short free-kick and scoring with a low 25-yard shot and Doncaster took a 22nd-minute lead through Harrison Biggins, who netted from close range from Molyneux’s delivery.

    Tom Anderson netted a third in the 76th minute at the near post from Hakeeb Adelakun’s pass, and Joe Ironside sealed victory when he converted after Sam Hornby had tipped James Maxwell’s shot onto a post.

    A point on the final day against Gillingham will seal a play-off spot regardless of results elsewhere and McCann said: “I’m really proud.

    “Obviously conceding early wasn’t ideal for us but the response was outstanding.

    “We scored two very good goals, the first one from Mols (Molyneux) and the second one was another very good goal and something we knew could help us in the game, Biggo’s (Biggins) runs from the centre circle in between the posts after good play by Mols.

    “In the first half, we were a little bit edgy and it was a little bit even Steven in the game.

    “But in the second half, we were really comfortable and scored another couple of really good goals.

    “We always play for more goals; we never sit tight and take what we’ve got – that’s just the way we like to go about things.

    “We came up against a team that’s obviously down the wrong end of the table and we knew it was going to be tough.”

    Fevrier had Colchester on track to secure survival but they go into Saturday’s final game just three points above the drop zone, with their goal difference superior by four over Sutton.

    Colchester boss Danny Cowley said: “It was a tough night for us.

    “We have the ability to self-harm, to self-destruct, in a game where we let four terrible goals in.

    “For 75 minutes, it was 2-1 and they’ve had three shots at goal, two from 30 yards, and somehow they’re winning the game.

    “We were 2-1 down at half-time where we felt we shouldn’t have been, as we’d done a lot right.

    “We were in total ascendency and they don’t even want to score any more goals, they want to hang onto what they’ve got and we gift them another two goals.

    “I’ve just looked back at the goals and they’re very hard to defend.

    “We actually played well box to box but you can’t say you’ve played well when we’ve conceded the goals that we have.

    “It’s a damaging night and I’m really angry. We just did the basics so poorly.”

  • Barrow must stick together in quest to secure play-off spot – Pete Wild Barrow must stick together in quest to secure play-off spot – Pete Wild

    Barrow boss Pete Wild stressed his side must stick together to secure a League Two play-off spot on the final day of the season.

    The Bluebirds suffered a fifth defeat in a painful six-game winless run with a last-gasp 2-1 loss to Bradford.

    It means they have to get a result when they host promoted Mansfield on Saturday.

    Bobby Pointon opened the scoring with a great strike in the first half before Kian Spence levelled with a free-kick after the break.

    But former on-loan Barrow forward Tyler Smith came off the bench to score a bruising stoppage-time winner against his old club.

    And Wild said: “We didn’t do anything with or without the ball. We were frustrated at half-time. I told them ‘we’ve got to have a go and try to get over the line’.

    “We played really well second half, had a go, came out fighting and got the goal, but it wasn’t enough.

    “We were on the front foot. We kept trying to throw subs on to put impetus into the game and you get hit by a sucker punch at the end.

    “We had four chances to clear the ball and that’s been the month hasn’t it. There have been key moments in game, chances and opportunities with the football and we’ve not done that.

    “We weren’t getting a glove on them and we had to try and be braver, second half.

    “I will never make it about them, it’s about us. We’re all a collective. We will win together and lose together and that’s how we’ve gone through the season.

    “What we have to do now is just stick together and try to keep going.

    “Across the last four games you have seen glimpses of us, but not enough of us across a full 90 minutes to get over the line.”

    The Bantams were indebted to Sheffield-born Smith’s late winner for their fourth-straight win.

    Boss Graham Alexander said: “I’m pleased that the players have once again showed character and personality to once again get a win from a game we should never have been drawing anyway.

    “We were brilliant in the first half and should have been two or three up. But we weren’t and a good team like Barrow are going to come back into it and have a spell of pressure and momentum.

    “Ultimately they got a goal from it. From our perspective it’s a poor one to concede going through the wall.

    “Our performance became a bit flat after that. They had real quality and gained chances.

    “The subs that came on halted their momentum.

    “They were going for it as well and it was going to be (down to) who had that quality to score.

    “To be fair to Tyler, he would have been under massive pressure in his own head, but he stuck it in the corner so fair play to him.”

  • Ex-Barrow striker Tyler Smith nets late Bradford winner to dent play-off hopes Ex-Barrow striker Tyler Smith nets late Bradford winner to dent play-off hopes

    Former Barrow striker Tyler Smith came back to haunt his old side with a late winner as their quest to make the League Two play-offs goes down to the final day after a narrow 2-1 loss at home to Bradford.

    The Bluebirds have endured a poor run at the worst part of the season with just one point from six.

    Barrow goalkeeper Paul Farman produced a good stop to keep out Andy Cook in the 20th minute, while talented 20-year-old Bobby Pointon fired the Bantams ahead with a fine strike after 29 minutes.

    Home forward Cole Stockton saw an effort cleared off the line and their pressing told as Kian Spence levelled with a fine free-kick on the hour.

    Pete Wild made four changes in the final 15 minutes in a bid for the home side to get a season-defining goal.

    Barrow substitute David Worrall could only fire straight at Sam Walker, but it was the visitors who secured the three points as the hosts were left with a nervous wait.

    Smith – who spent the first half of the 2018-19 season on loan at Barrow – came off the bench to score a stoppage-time winner from Cook’s flick on.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.