‘Professor’ Arteta has Ozil & rest of Arsenal squad pulling in the same direction – Mustafi


Shkodran Mustafi has lauded Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta as a “professor” and saluted the Spaniard for uniting the Gunners, with Mesut Ozil among those buying into a new way of thinking.

The north London giants found themselves going backwards during an inconsistent start to the 2019-20 campaign.

Unai Emery, who had been chosen to the fill the shoes of Arsene Wenger, was unable to deliver the required results despite being given considerable funds to spend in the transfer market.

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Once the decision was taken to part with his services, a fellow countryman was appointed in his place.

Former Arsenal captain Arteta has impressed in what is his first top coaching post, with Mustafi among those to have suggested that a brighter future lies in store for the Gunners.

The German defender told Sky Sports of his boss: "He's a little like a professor.

"He knows exactly where he wants the players to be when on the ball and how to react when losing the ball. It's very special.

"When I pass I am usually only focused on where to be if we lose the ball but he wants me to contribute offensively too. So we constantly need to make an option for the player on the ball.

"When you are 28 and you play in different countries with other coaches you think you know everything but then he came in and there are things I've never known before."

Mesut Ozil/Mikel Arteta Arsenal 2019-20
Mesut Ozil/Mikel Arteta Arsenal 2019-20

Arteta has everybody pulling in the same direction at Emirates Stadium, with even divisive figures such as World Cup winner Ozil embracing a fresh approach.

Mustafi added: "Sometimes we don't realise what a difficult job it is.

"From 25 players maybe 20 agree with the coach and five still think we should play different.

"Since Mikel has come in he has 25 players on board and this is not easy to achieve.

"Everyone understands and everything he says makes sense. There is nothing we can complain about. Everyone has benefited, even Mesut."

Arsenal are now waiting to discover whether English football will be given a green light to resume amid the coronavirus pandemic, with Mustafi set to be among the interested observers when the Bundesliga returns this weekend.

He said: "There is so much talk and opinions on this but I'm just looking forward to playing.

"Germany has done very well with the situation. That's why they can start playing but it's very difficult to explain what I think.

"I don't know difference between Germany and England. Some think it's good, some don't. For me, the main thing is we have to think of the safety."

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