Mikel Arteta’s determination to change the mindset of his Arsenal squad and develop a winning mentality is perhaps best summed up by Kieran Tierney’s emergence as a key figure at the club.
The Scotland left-back, who arrived at the Emirates in a £25m transfer from Celtic last August, has started five of Arsenal’s six Premier League games since the restart. He struggled to make an impression under former manager Unai Emery due to early fitness issues at the club.
Sources have told ESPN, however, that Tierney also caused some awkward moments in his early months at the club with his commitment in training, which did not go down well with some of his teammates.
Having been schooled to “train as you play” by Scottish Premiership giants Celtic, Tierney was urged to tone it down by teammates at Arsenal who had grown accustomed to less forceful workouts under Emery and his predecessor, Arsene Wenger.
All that has changed under Arteta, however, with sources telling ESPN that Tierney’s aggressive approach has been received favourably by the new manager. — Mark Ogden