New Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta says that it is a “huge honour” to take over at his former club, adding that the board of Arsenal has made it “very clear” that he is to compete for trophies now that he’s in charge. Arteta was appointed Arsenal boss on Friday following a week full of speculation and reports that he would take over as manager at the Emirates.
The former midfielder, who played for Arsenal from 2011-16, will now step in to replace Freddie Ljungberg, who has taken charge of the team following Unai Emery’s dismissal.
Arteta said in a statement:
‘This is a huge honour. Arsenal is one of the biggest clubs in the world. We need to be competing for the top trophies in the game and that’s been made very clear to me in my discussions with Stan and Josh Kroenke, and the senior people from the club.
‘We all know there is a lot of work to be done to achieve that but I am confident we’ll do it. I’m realistic enough to know it won’t happen overnight but the current squad has plenty of talent and there is a great pipeline of young players coming through from the academy.’
Arsenal confirmed in their statement that Arteta’s support staff will be confirmed ‘as soon as possible’, while temporary boss Freddie Ljungberg’s future remains unclear for now.
He was initially expected to be in charge for Arsenal’s game against Everton on Saturday with Arteta watching on, however that could change.
He added: ‘I also want to thank Freddie Ljungberg for skilfully guiding us through the last three weeks. He stepped up at short notice and has helped us through this difficult period with great professionalism.’
Head of football Raul Sanllehi said: ‘We met several top-class candidates and Mikel stood out to every single one of us as the perfect person for us.
‘Mikel understands Arsenal Football Club and what it means to our fans around the world. We look forward to him getting down to work and bringing the best out of our squad as we work to get our season back on track.’
Mikel had an impressive track record at Arsenal during his career: