Mikel Arteta has discussed Arsenal’s progress since the club’s chastening opening day defeat to Brentford, ahead of the return clash with the Bees this weekend.
Arsenal’s season began in disastrous fashion after a humbling 2-0 defeat to the newly-promoted side in the season’s opening fixture, with the Gunners bottom of the division in late August after losing each of their opening three games without scoring.
The north Londoners have shown huge signs of improvement since their stuttering start and are sixth in the Premier League at present, four points outside the Champions League places and with three games in hand on fourth-placed Manchester United.
Arsenal’s defensive improvement has seen the Gunners keep five clean sheets in their past seven, including a hard-fought 1-0 win at Wolves last time out, despite being reduced to ten men.
Summer signings Aaron Ramsdale, Takehiro Tomiyasu and Ben White have all emerged as central figures to the side, each proving valuable to the club’s progression.
Ahead of the club’s return fixture against Brentford this weekend, Arteta has discussed his side’s development over the course of the campaign.
“There’s a lot of things that you learn in terms of the preparation, the team that you selected, analysing what happened and how it happened,” Arteta told his pre-match press conference.
”Not analysing it in a different context, exactly what happened with the players that you had on the day and don’t lose focus on the direction because it’s really easy to start to shift one side and the other and keep what you’re doing in your beliefs and keep going and be very stubborn on that.
“It’s sticking to what we planned and understanding the difficulties along the way. I said on day one, I think the club was very clear, this is not going to be a clean ride, it doesn’t happen. When you go from A to B or C, or the level that the Premier League has, it’s not going to be a straight line up there, it’s never going to happen.
“It’s going to be a line that comes down and then hopefully we will get there and you have to be prepared for that, because if not, you will change your direction and then you will be in big trouble.”