Former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has revealed that he still pays close attention to his old club and hopes Mikel Arteta can restore the old culture of football at the club.
The Gunners have struggled to compete in recent years, as it has become more about qualifying for the Champions League through a top-four finish in the Premier League rather than competing for the title.
Unai Emery, Wenger’s successor after his 22-year tenure came to an end, was sacked last year, and Arteta has since been appointed as his long-term replacement.
The early signs are positive from the Spaniard as he’s shored things up at the back and made Arsenal more difficult to beat, having lost just one of their last 13 games across all competitions prior to the season being suspended.
Wenger has revealed that he still watches Arsenal regularly, and hopes that Arteta can bring back the culture and style of play that became synonymous with the Gunners during his own time in charge.
“I worry about the club still a lot and I watch all of the games,” he told talkSPORT, as quoted by the Metro. “I believe there is a culture in the way to play football at Arsenal that I want to be respected, and I hope Mikel can get that back.
“I’m very proud and happy to contribute a little bit to improve things. My heart is still with the club. I think a lot of that period. Twenty-two years at one club is unusual. I’m proud.
“At the end of the day when you look back, you don’t think about what you won or lost so much but I’m proud for having the attitude just to serve the club while I was there. I have more satisfaction looking back too at the Emirates that we built all that without a penny from anybody. And today the club can take off more and be more successful.”
Arsenal fans will no doubt appreciate what Wenger did at the club despite how the relationship soured towards the end of his tenure, but they will also share the same sentiments under Arteta as the north London giants were widely lauded for the way they played the game with flair, creativity and inventiveness.
Given his time with Pep Guardiola and how that might have influenced his own coaching style and how he wants to see his own team play, Arteta could fit with Arsenal and Wenger’s vision perfectly, but time will tell if he can combine that with success too as that is something that all concerned continue to crave having fallen short for so long.