Arsenal chief exec Venkatesham gives his public backing to under-fire Arteta

Arsenal chief executive Vinai Venkatesham has issued a public backing of manager Mikel Arteta, with the Spaniard coming under intense pressure in recent weeks after a poor run of league form.

After an initially positive opening to the season, it all appears to have gone wrong at the Emirates, with the Gunners currently in 15th in the table after picking up just four wins from their opening 11 games – their worst ever start to a Premier League campaign.

The North London club’s last league win came back at the start of November against Manchester United, with Arteta’s side having lost to Aston Villa, Wolves and Tottenham since that win at Old Trafford.

The Gunners have enjoyed a perfect run of results in the Europa League to see them ease into the knockout stages, yet that seemingly hasn’t helped deflect the pressure away from the former Manchester City assistant coach ahead of their weekend clash with Burnley.

With question marks having been raised about his future, Arteta still appears to retain the confidence of the Arsenal board, Vinai Venkatesham gaving his public backing to the Spaniard, the chief executive full of praise for what he described as a ‘powerful individual’.

“With Mikel we have got a number of things,” Venkatesham told The Times.

“You’ve got an individual who has extraordinary experience in the Premier League across his time at Arsenal, Everton, Man City and then back at Arsenal.

“You have got a guy that loves this club and understands what it means to play for this club, and he was obviously [the] captain here. You’ve got a guy who is a real team player.

“The team he’s formed with Edu [the technical director], and also his technical staff, is really, really strong.

“You’ve got a guy who is absolutely driven to succeed and be successful on the pitch, but doing it in a way that respects our history and traditions.

“So I think with him we have got a really, really powerful individual.”

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