Mikel Arteta claims Arsenal had to “go a little bit backwards” under him in order to establish forward momentum, with a “significant” summer of spending at Emirates Stadium helping to put the foundations in place on which future success can be built.
The Gunners suffered a serious stumble out of the blocks this season, with no points and no goals recorded through their opening three Premier League fixtures.
Pressure began to build on Arteta as a result, especially as a club-record £145 million ($200m) had been invested in the last transfer window, but the tide has turned with three successive wins – including a notable derby success against Tottenham – and the Gunners boss believes there is cause for optimism in north London.
What has been said?
Arteta told Sky Sports of the long-term project that he continues to oversee: “Momentum is down to confidence, it’s down to believing in what you do and really feeling it and trying to embrace it and adding something every week, making sure that the steps are forwards.
“In every project that is impossible to happen every single week and sometimes you have to go a little bit backwards to go forwards. You have to realise that and not lose perspective.
“The changes we made this summer were probably the most significant that we have made since I’ve been here. Now you start to get a sense that we are all on the same page.
“Any project needs the right foundations and now we have clarity in what we want to do. We start to have some stability.
“We have to start unity, which is a big part of it. When that happens, the better the decisions are, everything is more calm and settled and things start to happen.”
Have Arsenal turned a corner?
After overcoming a slow start, Arsenal have taken maximum points from the last nine on offer.
They are now into the top half of the Premier League table and setting their sights on mounting a push towards the Champions League qualification spots.
Arteta is considered to have cobbled together a squad that is capable of shaking shackles that have been holding them back for some time, with exciting youngsters being blended with seasoned performers.
With a 3-1 victory over arch-rivals Spurs still fresh in the memory, and with an international break fast approaching, the Gunners will be back in action on Saturday when taking in a trip to Brighton.
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