Mikel Arteta insists Arsenal must ‘rebuild trust’ with the club’s supporters following the fall-out over collapsed plans for a European Super League.
Arsenal were one of six Premier League clubs to withdraw their initial interest in the proposals following an angry backlash from the footballing world, supporters having protested at a show of greed from Europe’s elite.
The plans included guaranteed annual entry for 15 founder clubs and threatened the competitiveness of the game globally, with leading figures – including Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp and Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola – having condemned the concept despite their clubs forming part of the agreement.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez believes plans for a breakaway competition remain on ‘stand-by’ despite the collapse this week, and Arteta has now given his view on whether plans for a Super League will return in some form.
“Football will evolve for sure, like any other sport and like any other aspect in this life. Like technology and the way that we interact with each other, there is a lot of things that are going to change in the next few years,” Arteta told his pre-match press conference ahead of Arsenal’s clash with Everton on Friday.
“What I’m hoping is that everything is constructive, protecting the wellbeing of football. The competition has to be the priority and the passion has to be the priority. Afterwards, the rest will take care of itself. I think if it’s done all the time with the right reasons and unifying interests I think very important achievements can be done.
“It will depend, I think now everything is damaged and everybody has to be working. We have a responsibility sitting here and you guys there to again rebuild that trust and put football back in the right place so we can move forward. The world is looking at us and we have a lot to say.”
Arteta discussed the anger from the Arsenal support over the club’s involvement in the plans, outlining his hope that the Gunners can repair a fractured relationship with the fanbase as all parties look to move forward from the fall-out.
“The fans have to express, that is their right and they have to do it freely. For me, what it shows is the power and the capacity when they show that determination and passion to achieve what they want.
“If we can use this with our fans to support the team, I think that will be incredibly powerful and it will make us much, much stronger.
“So it’s time to leave them to express themselves and now, somehow, we have to engage them again, get them closer to us and believing in what we do. If we do that, we’ll be in a much better place.”
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