mikel arteta arsene wenger arsenal

Wenger says Arteta should surround himself with experience when he becomes Arsenal manager

Mikel Arteta should surround himself with experience if he is appointed as the new head coach of Arsenal, that’s according to former Gunners boss Arsene Wenger.

The Manchester City assistant has emerged as the leading candidate to succeed the sacked Unai Emery at the Emirates, the Spaniard having held advanced talks about taking his first role in senior management at the club where he finished his playing career.

The 37-year-old has impressed since moving into coaching and has worked closely alongside Pep Guardiola at the Etihad, being part of the backroom staff which has helped the club to successive league titles and a domestic treble.

He is now expected to be named as the new head coach of Arsenal in the coming days, and the former Gunners Wenger insists he will support Arteta should he be appointed as is anticipated.

“I am an Arsenal supporter,” Wenger told Sky Sports. “And at the moment I support the manager in charge and the manager in charge is Ljungberg. When Arteta will be in charge I will support Arteta.

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“For the rest, of course Arsenal is going through a very difficult period so it’s better I don’t comment too much on that and I just suffer like every supporter.”

Arteta spent the final five seasons of his career playing under Wenger at the Emirates, and the Frenchman has spoken glowingly about his former player who he believes has a ‘great future’ in management.

However, despite his credentials, Arteta’s inexperience makes him somewhat of a bold choice, and Wenger insists that he will need the help of experienced coaches as he bids to overcome his own lack of managerial experience.

“He (Arteta) is intelligent, he has passion, he has knowledge, but Ljungberg [does] as well,” Wenger added.

“I believe that Arteta has certainly a great future, he has certainly learned a lot in his first position as an assistant coach and after that as well he will have to deal with the fact that he has no experience at that level, and he will have to get surrounded well.”

Arsenal have struggled in recent seasons and currently sit tenth in the Premier League ahead of this weekend’s clash with Everton, despite the club having spent significantly in the summer on the likes of Nicolas Pepe and Kieran Tierney.

Wenger admits the club’s transfers in recent years have not worked out as hoped, but reckons the Gunners are not too far away from returning to success should they make the right decisions in the coming windows.

“When I left the club was in a very strong financial position and they bought many players in-between – they have not all worked out,” Wenger added.

“I believe that it’s not a question of time. The change can be very efficient very quickly, it’s just about the right decision-making and that’s all that it’s about in football, it’s about good players.

“We speak about the success of Liverpool, of course they have a great manager, but you have to say as well that in the last three-four years, they bought the right players.”

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See also – Five great Premier League players who flopped as managers