Former Chelsea and Arsenal midfielder Alan Hudson has warned the Gunners against replacing the struggling Mikel Arteta with Maurizio Sarri.
There’s plenty of talk surrounding Arteta’s future at the moment, with Arsenal being dumped out of the Europa League semi-finals this week after 2-1 aggregate defeat to Villarreal.
This means Arsenal face their first season without European football for 26 years next term – unacceptable for a club of this size.
Arteta looked a risky choice when he took over at the Emirates Stadium, with the Spaniard only previously working as part of Pep Guardiola’s coaching staff at Manchester City.
Despite getting off to a strong start as Arsenal manager last season with an FA Cup win, Arteta is now struggling and the club might do well to bring in someone with more experience.
Hudson is unsure about Arsenal going down the route of Chelsea, however, and chopping and changing their managers too much, while he was particularly put off the idea of the north Londoners perhaps trying to bring in Maurizio Sarri.
Sarri is out of work at the moment but certainly has pedigree at the highest level after some fine work at Napoli, Chelsea and Juventus, though he certainly divided opinion in his brief time in England.
Hudson, who is more well known for his 189 appearances for Chelsea, but who also played 47 times in two seasons for Arsenal, told CaughtOffside that he expected the Gunners to stick with Arteta, and that they need someone who can bring a smile to the players’ faces, rather than Sarri.
“The talk from the Emirates is that Arteta is being given money to spend, and I think they need to stick with him,” Hudson said. “Otherwise they will become like a second Chelsea with sacking managers – only theirs are nowhere as good!
“As for Sarri, Arsenal need someone to bring a smile back on faces as there’s too many long faces there already.”
Hudson also commented on the poor form of Willian this season after his move from Stamford Bridge to the Emirates last summer.
The Brazilian was a top performer during his time at Chelsea but hasn’t got going at all in a red and white shirt, and Hudson thinks the player perhaps moved for the wrong reasons.
“Willian only moved across London because his best friend (David Luiz) is there,” Hudson said.
“He looked from day one like a Chelsea player in an Arsenal shirt. You can tell by his body language he’s on the wrong side of London.
“Not since George Graham has a blue gone across London and been a success.”