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Youth is winning, and little else matters besides that

Arsenal has so many questions that need addressing in their everyday life, but as long as youth keeps winning, they are in the clear.

This isn’t how Arsenal‘s restart was supposed to go. We were supposed to come back, guns blazing, and stake a claim to the top four. That’s what looked like was going to happen after the fantastic start to Mikel Arteta‘s tenure in charge.

That hasn’t happened, as the Gunners haven’t actually moved anywhere from their 9th place pre-pause position. They’re still sitting in the exact same spot.

So, in that sense, things suck. We should be doing better. But we always need to keep in mind that Arteta is here as a long-term solution, meaning that his top priority should not be an immediate and temporary fix. His top priority should be—and is—finding long-term solutions.

In that sense, he is winning. And as long as he is winning there, little else matters besides that. Because he’s building something sustainable rather than something instantaneous.

We’re seeing it in the three matches back from the pause. It starts on defense. In the midst of the crisis, David Luiz has faltered and fallen while Rob Holding has risen to the occasion. Sure, Luiz may be staying for another year, but in light of recent events, that feels like an emergency fallback and nothing more.

Holding has helped facilitate that.

Moving up the pitch, the presence of Joe Willock over Mesut Ozil has been inspiring. Ozil hasn’t played a single minute while Willock has played 106, including scoring a goal. He’s long been a youthful wildcard, but the more he delivers end results like this, the higher his stock rises.

And even in the midst of the Gabriel Martinelli injury, Bukayo Saka remains one of the most talented players on the pitch. While he has yet to sign a new deal, his future is supposedly in his hands, according to recent reports, and that makes things exciting. Something is going to happen.

Lastly, Eddie Nketiah has pulled ahead in the race against Alexandre Lacazette when a draw would do. All these young stars have to do is prove that they can do what these veterans can do. Once they do that, we all win.

Next: 5 Things Learned Against Southampton

It’s a work in progress, but it looks like Arteta is a man with a mission with these youngsters. Keep those wins coming by keeping youth active.

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