It does feel like the idea of a European Super League has been squashed, but the battle to reform football and make it a more competitive sport still goes on.
It’s clear that the ESL was formed without the knowledge of most players and coaches so the owners are the ones who need to take the blame, and that’s led to numerous protests around the country just now.
Stan Kroenke is particular unpopular at Arsenal after his part in this and the fans want him out, but that can only happen if there is pressure applied from all sides – including the coaching staff.
Mikel Arteta had the chance to lay down a marker in his press conference today and show that he won’t support anything like this, but instead it has the air of a hostage video as he solidifies himself as Kroenke’s puppet:
Mikel Arteta has refused to criticise the Kroenke's ownership of Arsenal…?
Thoughts, on this Gooners? ? pic.twitter.com/SH9PAiz9Bx
— CaughtOffside (@caughtoffside) April 22, 2021
Perhaps he didn’t feel like he had a choice in the matter, but the initial apologies have now turned into the club closing ranks and plenty of the fans are far from impressed with this behaviour:
Arteta is becoming the Kroenkes puppet. #KroenkeOutNow
— Shaun Bonello (@bonello_shaun) April 22, 2021
Arteta showing again why he got the job! Just a yes man puppet. Embarrassing club from top to bottom.
— jack cornhill (@cornhill_j) April 22, 2021
Shamelessly arteta is backing kroneke or should I say new puppet of kroneke pic.twitter.com/KrdTRIXZru
— Freddie king burg (@theLAHK) April 22, 2021
He couldn’t even face up to the players himself. Arteta is being used as the puppet once again https://t.co/vPkWrGxna2
— Matt (@MattAFC9) April 22, 2021
truth. you can’t support arteta and be #kroenkeout. that’s a contradiction. they’re the same. same agenda same process. arteta is just a kroenke puppet.
— invincible fc (@afc49invincible) April 21, 2021
— LeoLAHK (@LeoLAHK0) April 21, 2021
The major fear now will be that the ESL will be tried again in a few years if those behind it don’t face some very real consequences soon, and this was a chance for Arteta to stand up for the fans rather than his paymaster.