Paul Merson names the one thing Mikel Arteta has changed at Arsenal

Mikel Arteta has done a 'phenomenal' job as Arsenal boss so far, according to Paul Merson

Mikel Arteta (Photo: Arsenal Media / Screengrab)
Mikel Arteta (Photo: Arsenal Media / Screengrab)

Paul Merson has praised Mikel Arteta for the “phenomenal” impact he has had at Arsenal this season, and says that the Gunners finally look like they have a “plan” when coming up against the top teams.

The north London side boosted their hopes of ending the season with a trophy on Saturday night when they claimed a brilliant 2-0 win over Manchester City at Wembley to book their place in the FA Cup final.

Arteta’s side have been showing some glimpses of improvement since the Spaniard was brought in to replace the sacked Unai Emery at the end of last year.

Arsenal produced a solid and disciplined performance against the Citizens as they set up an FA Cup final showdown with Chelsea FC at Wembley next month.

Arteta will now be looking forward to his first full season in charge at Arsenal as he looks to steer the north London side up the Premier League table.

Former Arsenal star Merson was very impressed by the Gunners’ performance against the Citizens at the weekend and he feels that Arteta deserves plenty of praise for the impact he has had at The Emirates.

Writing in his column for Sky Sports, Merson said: “Arsenal have a plan, they go and press when they have to, drop off when they don’t, they play with high energy and counter attack as a team.

“They were outstanding against Man City. That was David Luiz – there’s no grey area – he’s either 9/10 or 4/10. But when he plays like that, he’s brilliant.

“Arteta has done an absolutely phenomenal job. It’s the first time I’ve watched Arsenal in many, many years, and they have a plan.

“Man City were up for it in the second half, and Arsenal put themselves on the line. I honestly think he’s done a brilliant job. I can’t talk highly enough of him.

“Against Liverpool, Arsenal rode their luck, but that’s Arsenal now. They can’t play against Liverpool and Man City as if they are the favourites, they have to grind it out like Sheffield United have to grind it out. That’s what Arsenal must do now.”

Arsenal will take on Watford at The Emirates in their final game of the Premier League season on Sunday afternoon.

After that, the Gunners will complete their campaign when they take on London rivals Chelsea FC in the FA Cup final on 1 August at Wembley.

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