It was fun while it lasted for Arsenal but Mikel Arteta ignored Chris Sutton so Gabriel Jesus only managed one half and their back-up right-back is injured.
‘Fans convinced Champions League draw is ‘FIXED’ after Chelsea and Man City land nightmare opponents’ – The Sun website.
Three people on Twitter might technically qualify as ‘fans’ but good lord, it’s quite the all-encompassing term. And sticking a ‘BREAKING’ tag on it is a wonderful touch.
In the same week Erik ten Hag foolishly ‘ignored Paul Scholes’ advice’, there is yet another example of a witless manager flagrantly disregarding the views of a far more qualified pundit.
The Daily Mirror website fill us in:
‘Mikel Arteta failed to heed Chris Sutton’s warning before Arsenal vs Sporting Lisbon’
How could you, Mikel? The bloke had a 28% win record in 50 games at Lincoln between 2009 and 2010 in the only managerial post of his career. And you didn’t listen to him? Are you a f**king idiot?
That ‘warning’ was, obviously, to do with fielding first-team players in the Europa League when Arsenal are in such a strong Premier League position. Arteta did so against Sporting and saw William Saliba go off with a first-half injury, as well as Takehiro Tomiyasu.
“While I take my hat off to them for going strong in the Europa League, just imagine it is a risk that someone might get injured,” Sutton had said – sorry, ‘warned’ – before the game. And that is definitely a) a factor only Chris Sutton had identified, and b) a danger that the notoriously not-at-all-incredibly-meticulous Arteta had not spent ages weighing up.
Mediawatch is also absolutely certain that Arteta would not have been crucified in some quarters had he named a reserve side for a European knockout tie second leg at home with the scores level.
Insult to injuries
Mark Irwin of The Sun is not about to let a possible Arsenal pile-in opportunity pass him by either. Here he goes…
‘And though Arsenal still have the chance to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League to eight points on Sunday, Arteta will still be counting the cost of going so strong in a competition which has never been top of the club’s priorities.
‘For first-half injuries to Takehiro Tomiyasu and William Saliba means they are now facing a defensive dilemma just when they need all hands to the pump.’
That ‘defensive dilemma’ in full: their back-up right-back going off with an…
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