Mikel Arteta has revealed his belief that there is nothing unfair about the criticism Arsenal summer signing Willian has faced as of late, as reported by the Guardian.
Willian was a superb servant for Chelsea, but with the Blues having a policy of only offering short-term deals to players over the age of 30, his time at Stamford Bridge came to an end in the summer.
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In what proved to be a surprise to everyone, Willian put pen to paper with London rivals Arsenal. Unfortunately for him, and the Gunners, he has been nothing short of dismal so far this campaign.
Willian has a huge reputation, so Arsenal fans will have expected more than what he has contributed to date. Manager Mikel Arteta, as quoted by the Guardian, insisted that it’s not unreasonable to do so:
“I don’t say it’s unfair because expectations are really high in terms of the goals he can score, the assists he can create.”
“You expect him to be in the starting lineup, so it is normal that people write things about him.”
“What he is doing, the way he is training, the way he is working and the way he is pushing to give everything at the team, is what I demand. Whether he is more or less successful in the game is another matter. It will come, with the quality he has.”
Whether there is a future for Willian at the Emirates remains to be seen, but unless there is a major revival in his form between now and the end of the season, it wouldn’t be unwise for them to cash-in in the summer.