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Mikel Arteta accused of ‘self-sabotaging’ Arsenal’s title hopes

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Mikel Arteta accused of 'self-sabotaging' Arsenal's title hopes
Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta (Image: Getty)

Mikel Arteta has been accused by Jamie Carragher of potentially sabotaging Arsenal‘s title hopes by putting too much pressure on his players.

Despite a promising summer recruitment drive, Arsenal is showing signs of early-season stress, according to Carragher.

Last season, the Gunners put up a commendable fight but ultimately fell short, with Manchester City clinching the end-of-season honors. The club’s significant investment in new talent during the summer has sparked fresh optimism among fans.

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Arsenal has made a strong start to the current Premier League campaign, securing two wins and a draw.

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However, Carragher has criticized the team’s reaction to last week’s draw against Fulham, suggesting that Arteta needs to dial down the intensity.

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In his column for The Telegraph, the former Liverpool defender expressed his concern, stating, “Mikel Arteta’s approach to the opening fixtures has felt more like a title run-in, with every mistake magnified, and dropped points seen as a catastrophic blow to title hopes.”

Carragher further pointed out that the atmosphere around the club, including supporters, players, and the manager himself, appears excessively intense for the early stages of the season.

He urged Arsenal to relax and avoid panicking, asserting that the team is in a favorable position. Overreacting to average performances or early home draws, such as the one against Fulham, could hinder their aspirations prematurely.

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The football pundit also noted that the response to Arsenal’s victories has been overly enthusiastic. He cited the exuberant celebrations following the 1-0 win against Crystal Palace as an example.

While it was indeed an encouraging win, Carragher believed the reaction was more akin to a side with only two games left to secure the title, rather than one playing just their second game of the season.

Carragher attributed Arsenal’s early-season anxiety in part to the influence of Manchester City, who have set extraordinarily high standards in recent years.

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Despite not performing at their peak throughout the previous season, City clinched a historic treble. Meanwhile, Arsenal enjoyed one of their strongest seasons in years but ended without silverware.

“City have taken residence in Arsenal’s heads as much as they were in Liverpool’s for the previous five years,” added Carragher.

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“They will be loving what they are seeing in north London in the first three league games. The points threshold for winning the title is freakishly high.

“Everyone knows if you do not collect at least 90 points, you will not get close to Guardiola’s side. Basically, you need to enjoy one of the best league seasons in your club’s history just to be in the conversation. The impact of that is an era where negative results for those aspiring to challenge provoke a more extreme reaction than would have been the case previously.”

Jamie Carragher’s assessment of Arsenal’s early-season demeanor suggests that Mikel Arteta and the club need to manage expectations and remain composed in their pursuit of the Premier League title, considering the daunting standard set by Manchester City in recent times.

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