Michael Owen admits to ‘CRINGING’ when looking at Arsenal’s recent decisions in wake of Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang contract sagas… but insists the Gunners are on the up now with Mikel Arteta as boss
- Arsenal moved up to fifth on Thursday night following a 1-0 win at Wolves
- Michael Owen stated Gunners are heading in right direction under Mikel Arteta
- Former England striker claimed Arsenal had made a lot of bad calls in the past
- Owen praised Arteta for his handling of it and how he is building the team now
Michael Owen now believes Arsenal are finally heading in the right direction under manager Mikel Arteta following a series of ‘cringing’ decisions off the field.
The Gunners moved into fifth in the Premier League table on Thursday night following a 1-0 victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers, putting them well in command to seal a top four place for the first time since 2016.
Owen stated that while the Emirates Stadium outfit are not a team of world beaters, the squad has improved its mental strength this season.
Michael Owen believes Arsenal are now heading in the right direction under Mikel Arteta
Arsenal are fifth in the Premier League after Gabriel’s goal (above) saw them beat Wolves
‘It’s the most positive I’d be if I was an Arsenal fan at the moment for a long time,’ Owen said on BT Sport.
‘They’re still lacking a few good players but they look as if they can away to tough places now and fight it out a bit more. Usually they get bullied a lot of the time.
‘I watched them at the start of the season against Brentford and it was like this is the Arsenal of recent years but now they’ve got a bit of steel about them and if I was an Arsenal fan I’d be more hopeful at this moment than I have been in a while.
Owen credited Arsenal’s resurgence this term down to manager Mikel Arteta who is finally starting to shape the squad into his own mould having taken charge in December 2019.
Arsenal blundered in signing Mesut Ozil (centre) and Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang (right) to big contracts, only for them to fall out of first team favour at the club shortly after
But Owen believes Arteta’s handline of the duo has helped Arsenal in the long term
Arteta has fallen out with star players during his tenure including Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, with the former leaving last year and the latter last month, having been stripped of the club captaincy following a discipline breach.
Both had fell out of first team contention having only just signed big money contracts but Arteta has stuck to his ways and is now building a younger and more vibrant squad.
‘I think he’s [Arteta] gained a lot of people’s respect already by the way he’s going about things,’ Owen added.
Arteta is now building a stronger Arsenal team having shifted big money earners at the club
‘I cringe when I look at some of the big decisions that Arsenal have made in recent years and it always is the big players.
‘You look at what they gave Mesut Ozil and never played for ages and ages, then they go and give Aubameyang loads of money again and falls out and gets moved on.
‘With their big players and big signings, the big renegotiations of contracts, they’ve really messed it up in recent seasons but I do like now Arteta feels like he’s got a grip on the club, a bit more respect about the place.’
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