I haven’t read the article but this was always the danger considering the timing of this fixture. Playing against Liverpool at Anfield while the transfer window is still active, a game which no one realistically would expect us to win on paper. The only reason that people are making a point out of this is because of Arteta’s relative overachievement with this squad in recent times.
The pundits are right (unfortunately) to an extent. Arteta is getting the maximum out of this group. Again, against Liverpool that’s not enough but they have completed their squad in terms of challenging for the major honours, they are at the stage where they are reinforcing their back ups, adding strength in depth and renewing certain members – strengthening for longevity.
Arsenal are still in our infancy in terms of rebuilding. Arteta comes in for very little criticism here because he has changed the feeling around the club and has started to introduce that fear factor of playing against Arsenal. I think opposition teams respect us once again and that has so much value but it makes the job harder. It was going to happen at some point, it is probably happening earlier than we expected in truth.
Reality is that we are a long way off challenging for the title but we know that. Liverpool just reminded us of that fact. We remain on the right path, the club needs to give Arteta the tools to close that gap. The real test will come against playing Chelsea, Utd, Leicester, Everton, Wolves and the Shit. That’s the level where we want to challenge and succeed. Arteta has shown with this group he can do that when he gets the maximum out of them.