Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke is expected to stick with Arteta into next season although the north Londoners’ season, which was pinned on the Europa League, fell apart this week.
A 0-0 draw against Villarreal, after a 2-1 first-leg defeat, means Arsenal’s chances of silverware are over and that they will go another year without Champions League football having been stuck outside of UEFA’s premier competition since 2016-17.
Arteta’s charges are sat ninth in the Premier League table at present and could feasibly finish in the bottom half for the first time since the 1994-95 season.
The season after that was the last time Arsenal had no European football and it is highly likely that their 25-year run of Champions League or Europa League football will end. It does not even appear that there will be Europa Conference League nights at the Emirates next term.
But the former midfielder insists it will be no easy task because he claims Arsenal have been battling mediocrity for the past five years, despite winning two FA Cups in that time.
And Arteta wants Arsenal to get ruthless as he made it clear to the Kroenkes that they must address the problems in their first-team squad over the summer.
The Spaniard said: “We have not been competing with the top clubs in this country for five years. It is not as if this process started six months ago – it started five years ago and you can see this trend.
“I understand those concerns because when you are out of the Champions League for five years it is not just a casualty, it’s a trend.
“But we have to be ruthless. There is no time to waste and there is a lot to do.
“I know that we have disappointed a lot of people as well, and that really hurts because we want to give the best to everybody, but one thing I made clear is that to do what we want to do, I have no doubts that we are going to achieve it. If not, I wouldn’t be sat here.”
Arteta is desperate to repay the club’s fanbase, who have largely stuck by the former captain’s side, at least prior to the semi-final loss to Villarreal, which prevented an all-English final showdown against Manchester United.
“They have been incredible with the team and incredible with me since I arrived and I have to show my appreciation first of all,” Arteta, 39, said.
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“We were able to do that last season and we haven’t this season. We are the ones who have to give them something to cheer about. I think it is our moment to do something for them.”
Arsenal will look to pick themselves up and at least end the season respectably following their European disappointment.
They take on West Brom this Sunday (7pm kick-off) knowing they could relegate the Baggies with a win, then face Champions League finalists and London rivals Chelsea at Stamford Bridge the following Wednesday.
Arteta’s first full season in charge then sees Arsenal face Crystal Palace in their penultimate match before hosting Brighton to see out the campaign.
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed