Soccer-Arteta says recent slump took shine off Arsenal progress

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FILE PHOTO: Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is interviewed before a December 10, 2020 match

(Reuters) - Arsenal's Mikel Arteta says he loves being in football management despite describing his first year in charge at the Emirates Stadium as one of the most challenging years in the club's history.

The Spanish coach celebrates his one-year anniversary as Arsenal manager on Sunday, a day after their Premier League clash against Everton at Goodison Park.

Arteta said the structural changes over the past 12 months have shaken the foundations of the club, and while he guided the team to FA Cup and Community Shield triumphs, the recent slump has put his position under scrutiny.

"When you get to a club that goes through what we have in a year and on top of that we have a pandemic which is affecting the whole industry ... to do your profession is even more challenging," Arteta told a news conference.

"At the same time I'm telling you I love what I do and I feel so lucky and privileged to be at this football club.

"The highlight of the year is the two trophies... It could have been a really positive year but the recent form in the Premier League has taken the gloss off what we have done this year. We have to accept our form has not been good enough."

Arsenal are winless in their last six league games and find themselves 15th in the table with 14 points.

Arteta, however, is confident he still has the full backing of the board.

"You need results but after a big shake up we need to find the stability," Arteta said. "We need time, we all knew that - at least the people who made the decision with me to start this new project - it was going to take time."

(Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru, Editing by William Maclean)