Arsenal looks “more like a team” under Arteta, says Lukas Podolski

Lukas Podolski

Former Arsenal forward Lukas Podolski who is now playing for Antalyaspor in Turkey has called for support from the Arsenal board for Arteta during the summer transfer window as he sees potential in the new manager and also his former teammate.

“I see it, the level is going up. It depends on running and fighting spirit. You see there is more of a team on the pitch, the fans, Arsenal is like one of the big 5 teams in the world. With this team and this potential, we have to play every year in the Champions League and fight for the title. We have to invest and I hope Mikel with his team around him will do a great job for the next seasons”,

he told Ian Wright in a recent interview.

The former German international played for the Gunners for three seasons under the captaincy of Arteta and they won the FA cup together in 2014. Even though Podolski believes the board should be backing Arteta during the summer, it has to be kept in mind that there are few key players that go out of contract in the next 18 months including David Luiz and Mesut Ozil. Star forward Aubameyang  is out of contract in a years time and has already been warned by Arteta that he is not interested in players that are not committed to the club fully.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the league was suspended indefinitely on March 13, leaving Arsenal sitting 9th in the Premier League table in what has been a very disappointing season. While the FA is still trying to make a decision and doing everything possible to resume the league, Arsenal have still been dealing with injuries to a few players including Lucas Torreira and will be looking to  qualify for the Uefa Europa League.

Although many fans would argue that the team composition of Arsenal has been pretty much the same under new manager Mikel Arteta as it was before under Unai Emery, there is no denying that the toxicity has left the dressing room. Players look happier on the pitch and during training and you simply cannot ignore the statistics under Arteta. Arsenal have only lost 2 games out of 16 (8 wins and 6 draws), have drastically improved their defence (conceding less than 1 goal per match) and are averaging 1.77 points per match which is way better than what Emery or Ljungberg managed. The only concern right now, as mentioned earlier, is that contracts of star players are due to expire in 2021. Fans would be hoping that Arteta and the Arsenal management have a robust plan in mind to handle this.