Pascal Cygan gives verdict on Mikel Arteta’s job at Arsenal ahead of crunch Europa League semi-final

The Europa League remains Arsenal's only chance of silverware this season
The Europa League remains Arsenal’s only chance of silverware this season (Picture: Getty Images)

Pascal Cygan is yet to be impressed by Mikel Arteta and says Arsenal aren’t the type of club to always give managers time to prove themselves.

Arteta took over at the Emirates following the sacking of Unai Emery in November 2019 and managed to guide his former club to FA Cup glory in his first ever season as a manager.

Arsenal’s league form, though, has been inconsistent, and after finishing eighth last season, they look set for another mid-table finish in the current campaign.

Arteta goes up against predecessor Emery on Thursday
Arteta goes up against predecessor Emery on Thursday (Picture: Getty Images)

Arteta still has the chance to deliver silverware this season in the Europa League, but his side must get past a tough semi-final clash against Villarreal, who are managed by his predecessor Emery.

Former Gunners centre-back Cygan feels ‘sad’ about the current state of the north London club and is yet to be convinced by Arteta.

‘All those who love or have loved the club are sad to see it in this situation,’ Cygan told Goal.

Arsenal no longer play a leading role in the Premier League like we did during the Wenger era.

‘But it was always predictable that it would be very complicated for his successors to reproduce the type of results he obtained over such a long period.

‘I don’t think the club has lost its identity because it continues to produce and play young players. The new coach has just brought a new style of play.’

When asked whether he has been impressed by what he has seen from Arteta so far, Cygan said: ‘For the moment, no. Neither in the results or in the way we see things [on the pitch].

‘But I know that it takes time to get into the heads of the players with a new approach and a new system.

‘But this kind of club doesn’t always give you time to prove yourself. The results must be there immediately.

‘So it all depends on the degree of patience of Arsenal’s leaders.’

On Villarreal vs Arsenal in the first leg of their Europa League semi-final tie on Thursday, Cygan, who also played for the Spanis club, said: ‘The two teams are very close. They are close in terms of quality of player, quality of staff and in terms of results.

‘I’m expecting a really good game between two teams who will try to attack. It’s 50/50.’

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