Arsenal anxious after Arteta admission with lessons learned over latest Liverpool revival

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta Credit: Alamy
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta Credit: Alamy

Mikel Arteta has Arsenal supporters sweating over those Barcelona rumours, while the latest Liverpool revival receives the shortest shrift.


Notorious ETH
Question: when describing someone as a ‘manager’ or ‘coach’ simply will not suffice, how else can the person in charge of a football team be referenced?

Answer, courtesy of The Sun website: ‘Notorious Man Utd taskmaster Ten Hag takes time out of gruelling club rebuild to visit cafe with wife on ELECTRIC bike’.

Only a ‘notorious taskmaster’ could ride an ELECTRIC bike, to be fair.


Taking the Mik
Notorious Arsenal taskmaster Mikel Arteta is a man in demand right now; there are claims that Barcelona are monitoring his progress with a view to plucking him from north London at some point in the future.

Never one to miss an opportunity to mine clicks, the Daily Mirror website stoke the flames of speculation with this headline:

‘Mikel Arteta admitted leaving Arsenal is ‘inevitable’ as Barcelona eye hiring him as boss’

In the first paragraph, we are then told that: ‘Mikel Arteta has admitted it is “inevitable” he will one day be sacked as Arsenal manager amid speculation Barcelona are keeping tabs on the Spaniard.’

The ‘as’ in the headline and ‘amid’ in the first paragraph are key: Arteta said this in relation to the Barcelona rumours.

Yet he did no such thing. The Spaniard’s comments in question – “As a manager, probably, it’s the fear of getting sacked. I made a very conscious decision the day I made the decision to be a head coach, I said it would happen, today, tomorrow, in a month’s time, in ten year’s time, I don’t know when it will happen” – were given on Michael Calvin’s Football People podcast on October 6.

So Arteta ‘has admitted’ this despite it being 27 days ago. And he was talking about the “fear” of being sacked in general, not the fear of being sacked by Arsenal.

Also, there is a difference between ‘leaving Arsenal’ and being sacked at some point in a managerial career. Arteta said nothing about resigning or joining another club; he was only talking about the reality of the volatile job security of football managers.

And Arsenal are not sacking him any time soon, thus Arteta leaving Arsenal is the furthest thing from ‘inevitable’ right now, be it for Barcelona or anywhere else.


Arse about face
But where one leads, others must follow…

‘Mikel Arteta delivers major Arsenal future verdict as Barcelona line-up Xavi replacement’ – Football.London.

Shame about that hyphen. And that ‘major Arsenal future verdict’ which amounts to nothing of the sort.

‘Mikel Arteta admission will worry fans as Barcelona plot move for Arsenal boss’ – Daily Express website.

Yes, Arsenal supporters will be positively bricking it that Stan Kroenke might look at the Premier League table and decide to sack the manager that has Arsenal top after 12 games.


A slight difference of opinion
Notorious Spurs taskmaster Antonio Conte was still a point of focus during the remarkable game against Marseille, despite being consigned to the stands.

But one particular outlet and their online equivalent seem to have spotted entirely opposing things from the Italian.

‘Antonio Conte sat stony-faced high up in the stands while his Tottenham players celebrated wildly. This was a night of pure torture for the Tottenham boss as he endured a rollercoaster of emotions before Pierre-Emile Højbjerg won it with the very last kick’ – John Cross, Daily Mirror.

‘Banned Spurs boss Conte deliriously celebrated Champions League winner among Marseille fans’ – Daily Mirror website.

Is it possible to be deliriously stony-faced?


Caught Napping
Notorious Liverpool taskmaster Jurgen Klopp altered his starting XI from the defeat to Leeds for the game against Napoli: Ibrahima Konate, Kostas Tsimikas, James Milner and Curtis Jones replaced Joe Gomez, Andy Robertson, Harvey Elliott and Darwin Nunez against the Italian side, who were yet to lose this season.

How does Ken Lawrence of The Sun cram all that into one paragraph?

‘Klopp’s four-change side went up against the Serie A leaders –  unbeaten in 70 games this season and having sored [sic] 50 goals  – clearly hurting badly.’

That would be unbeaten in *17* games this season. And nope, not having ‘four-change side’ as a thing whatsoever, particularly not in an article that also refers to ‘geggenpressing’ and how ‘even there passion could only count for so much within a team struggling to rediscover itself’.


Another corner turned
Behold a man learning his lesson after being burned one too many times:

‘As Liverpool have already demonstrated, it pays not to indulge in knee-jerk reactions on the basis of the first month of the season… Rumours of Liverpool’s impending demise may have been greatly exaggerated’ – Chris Bascombe, Daily Telegraph, after Liverpool beat Bournemouth on August 27.

‘There have been plenty of false dawns already – remember the 9-0 win over Bournemouth and those last minute winners against Newcastle United and Ajax. All promised more than they ultimately delivered in Klopp’s search for momentum. This felt different’ – Chris Bascombe, Daily Telegraph, October 12.

‘As with recent glimmers of light, this win represented a baby step’ – Chris Bascombe, Daily Telegraph, after Liverpool beat Napoli on November 1.

The penny has finally dropped.


Worst headline of the day
‘HOJB DONE’ – The Sun.


The runner-up
‘CONTE US IN’ – The Sun website.

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