Paul Merson slams ‘clueless’ Arsenal board for targeting Mikel Arteta

Mikel Arteta is closing on a move to Arsenal from Manchester City
Mikel Arteta is closing on a move to Arsenal (AMA/Getty Images)

Paul Merson has branded Arsenal’s hierarchy as ‘clueless’ over their decision to target Mikel Arteta.

The Gunners have already held extensive talks with their former midfielder and Metro.co.uk understands that the club are confident that an agreement can be reached this week.

Arteta has been Pep Guardiola’s assistant at Manchester City since July 2016 and a move to Arsenal would be his first move into management.

And Merson believes Arsenal are taking a huge risk by appointing a candidate who lacks experience.

‘This is a big, big gamble putting someone that has never managed before in charge of a club the size of Arsenal,’ Merson told Sky Sports.

Mikel Arteta has been Pep Guardiola's assistant at Man City since 2016
Mikel Arteta has been Pep Guardiola’s assistant at Man City since 2016 ((EPA)

‘It’s all well and good saying he’s worked under Pep Guardiola, but let’s be honest, Guardiola would struggle managing this Arsenal team. Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp would struggle!

‘You’re only as good as your players at the end of the day and the idea of Arteta replicating Guardiola’s style of football at the Emirates just falls apart when you look at the players he’ll be working with.

‘Other than the fact he won’t get lost on the way to training, I don’t know what else he brings to the table.

‘I cannot make the case for Arteta because he’s never managed before, yet someone at Arsenal can. How can you do that?

‘I want to know who is upstairs at Arsenal saying this is a good appointment. From the club’s perspective, it’s clueless.’

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