New Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta says that it is a “huge honor” to take over at his former club, adding that the board has made it “very clear” that he is to compete for trophies now that he’s in charge.
Arteta was appointed Arsenal boss on Friday following a week full of speculation and reports that he would take over as manager at the Emirates.
The former midfielder, who played for Arsenal from 2011-16, will now step in to replace Freddie Ljungberg, who has taken charge of the team following Unai Emery’s dismissal.
Arteta joins his former club after serving as an assistant at Manchester City, where he worked closely with Pep Guardiola during a three-and-a-half-year stint.
And the Spanish coach says that he’s hoping to bring trophies to Arsenal now that he’s been appointed as a manager for the first time.
“This is a huge honor. Arsenal is one of the biggest clubs in the world. We need to be competing for the top trophies in the game and that’s been made very clear to me in my discussions with Stan and Josh Kroenke, and the senior people from the club,” he said.
“We all know there is a lot of work to be done to achieve that but I am confident we’ll do it. I’m realistic enough to know it won’t happen overnight but the current squad has plenty of talent and there is a great pipeline of young players coming through from the academy.”
Arteta featured under Arsene Wenger from 2011-16, becoming an Arsenal fan-favorite in the process.
He made a total of 149 appearances during his time as a Gunner, scoring 16 goals while helping Arsenal win both the FA Cup and Community Shield on two separate occasions.
The coach now returns to an Arsenal team that has come on hard times, especially in recent weeks.
Arsenal currently sit 10th in the Premier League, seven points out of the relegation zone and seven points away from fourth-place Chelsea.
The Gunners have won just two of their last 10 Premier League matches as the club has struggled under both Emery and Ljungberg, with the most recent defeat coming in a 3-0 battering from Arteta’s former employer Manchester City.
Arsenal will face another of Arteta’s former clubs on Saturday, as the Gunners take on Everton in their next match.