Ex-Gunner Kevin Campbell has told Antonio Conte to not ‘go anywhere near’ the Arsenal job if Mikel Arteta is sacked in the coming weeks.
The Spaniard is under a ton of pressure after three losses in three games. Arsenal are currently 20th in the Premier League table, and although we’ve had a ton of injuries and illnesses to deal with, it’s simply not good enough.
Arteta is unlikely to get sacked before our next game, but his job is not safe. If Arsenal don’t pick up a few consecutive wins after the international break, the board will have no choice but to show him the door. Many want Conte to replace him, but Campbell says he shouldn’t even consider it.
Campbell: Conte shouldn’t go anywhere near the Arsenal job
He told Sky Sports Super Sunday Matchday, as quoted by The Express: “If Mikel Arteta gets the sack, which big-name manager is going to put his reputation on the line and have no significant funds to go and change what he’s seeing?”
Asked about Conte, he said: “Arsenal, with all their players fit, will be okay. But if I’m Antonio Conte and I’m looking at that yesterday, I wouldn’t go anywhere near it. Let’s be honest, I wouldn’t go anywhere near it. Because it’s the basics. They’re getting the basics wrong.
“The manager can prepare you as much as he wants for a game. Once you cross that game, it’s your job. You can’t let [Ilkay] Gundogan beat you at the back post. It’s not up to the manager to go and press people and stay on your feet and communicate and be hard to beat.”
The Insider’s View:
Some managers look at a difficult job and run away to save their reputation. However, there are others who see a challenge like the one at Arsenal and back themselves to succeed, which will only push their status higher. Conte belongs to the second category.
The Italian is a world-class manager. He’s a serial winner who has shown his quality at the top level at multiple clubs. If there’s one man who can get Arsenal out of the hole we’re currently in, it would be him, but there’s no way Kroenke will bring him in.
The American prefers someone who will not have a go at the ownership in public. Conte will let everyone know what’s happening at the top of the club if things don’t go his way, which makes him a no-go for Kroenke, even though he could bring Arsenal back to the very top.
Let’s just hope that Arteta turns things around himself and succeed at the Emirates after the break.