Martin Keown outlines what Freddie Ljungberg must change at Arsenal
BBC Sport pundit Martin Keown says Arsenal caretaker manager Freddie Ljungberg needs to change the mentality of his players
Martin Keown says Freddie Ljungberg needs to change the mentality of the Arsenal players.
The former Sweden international took over the reins of the north London side last week after Unai Emery was sacked following a 2-1 home loss to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League.
Ljungberg had been working with Arsenal’s youth teams before the Gunners legend received the call to take charge of the senior team on an interim basis.
Arsenal played out a 2-2 draw with promoted side Norwich City at Carrow Road in his first game in charge as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored twice for the visitors.
The Gunners are in eighth position and seven points adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea FC in the race to secure a Champions League spot for the first time in four seasons.
Ljungberg’s former team-mate Keown outlined what the Arsenal caretaker manager needs to address at the north London side.
“I am sure Freddie will aspire to the same key values we had in our team when we played together, when the discipline and organisation we had when we lost the ball played a big part in our success,” Keown told BBC Sport.
“It is going to be hard for him to achieve those ideals with the squad he has got, and in what will probably be a limited timeframe, but he has got to try.
“If it is going to happen, it is not just down to him – there is going to have to be a shift in mentality from the Arsenal players.
“By that – and I am obviously speaking as an ex-defender here – I mean a realisation by the players of what is required when they are not in possession, and also a willingness to actually go and do it too.”
Emery was appointed as Arsene Wenger’s replacement in May 2018 following previous stints at Sevilla, Valencia and Paris Saint-Germain.
However, the Spanish head coach failed to improve the Arsenal team, although the Gunners managed to reach the Europa League final last term.
Arsenal haven’t won the Premier League title since 2003-04, when the Gunners finished the season unbeaten under Arsene Wenger.