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End of Season Report Mikel Arteta

May 21, 2012

Mikel Arteta

Name Mikel Arteta

  • Born March 26, 1982 San Sebastian, Spain
  • Position Midfielder
  • Squad Number 8
  • Previous Club(s) Everton Real Sociedad Rangers PSG (loan) Barcelona
  • Joined Arsenal August 31, 2011 (another panic but they said)
  • Prem Played 29 (6 goals) Europe played 6 Europe 2 (1 sub)

Mikel signed a four-year deal with the Club after completing his move from Everton on transfer deadline day in August 2011. The move to Arsenal was an on-off deadline day affair as reported on Sky News deadline day hype fest. Many said Mikel was one of four deadline day panic buys that was forced upon Arsenal by the late departure of Cesc and £asri and the 2-8 defeat by United a few days earlier. I must admit it could easily be seen that way.

Arteta has a lot of Premier League experience, having been with Everton since 2005, and making his name in the Scottish Premier League with Rangers, where he was a member of the domestic treble winning side of 2002/03.

Arteta signed a four-year deal for a reported fee of £10 million and  made his debut in a 1–0 home win against Swansea. Arteta scored his first goal for Arsenal in a 4–3 defeat at Blackburn and grabbed his  second in a 3–0 home win against WBA as he settled in at Arsenal.

“A club like Arsenal has to be in that situation [at the top in the Premier League and Champions League],” he said. “If they are not, it means people are not expecting big enough things. That [pressure] is what we all want.”

Next  goal for Mikel opened the scoring with a 25 yard “Worldy” in a 4–0 away win at Wigan

“Every side in the Premier League works hard but one goal is not enough,” he said. “We have to be ruthless at home and keep more clean sheets to make sure we don’t drop points. We have to stand up now.” he was not talking about Didier Drogba.

 Mikel captained Arsenal in the  FA Cup victory over Leeds United, the game where  TH12 made his second debut and bagged the goal that won Arsenal the match.

“It was really pleasing for me to be captain for a club like Arsenal, it’s unbelievable,” he said. I just want to thank my team-mates for the effort, and my manager for the support.”

Mikel scored his fourth goal in the 7-1 thrashing of Blackburn scoring from the edge of the box and then was superb as Arsenal beat Spuds 5-2.

“I just try to balance the team a little bit,” he said. “Sometimes I would like to go forward more, but I’ve still had chances and the goal [against Blackburn] was my sixth this year, which isn’t bad. I don’t want to be the main man; we all know who the main man is and that’s Robin. He is the leader, he is the one who makes a real difference.”

Mikel then scored another “Worldy” with a  30 yard free-kick in a 3–0 win over Villa.

“He is always 100 per cent focused and committed and that is what you want from a real professional,” said Arsene Wenger. “He brings the best out of other players. I believe he is a winner and a fighter as well. I think he possesses both aspects of the game of a real midfielder – that means he can defend and he can attack. That is what we looked for.”

His best and most important goal came against Man City, where with 3 mins left and 0-0 he picked the ball up, after City had lost possession in their own half. Arteta came forward and unleashed hell on Hart in the City goal and his 25 yarder flew into the net hardly leaving the deck. This brought the house to it’s feet and about 40k people doing the Poznan and taking the rise out of City. Brilliant moment and one of my best moments of the season. Arteta then suffered an ankle injury in the  2–1 defeat at home to Wigan after 10 mins and his season was over.

“He is a player you don’t like to lose because he is an organiser, a winner and has great qualities,” said manager Arsene Wenger. “He has 90-minute focus on the pitch and what typifies him well is the goal he scored against City.”

Mikel has had a superb first season and the fans have taken to him. If this is what a last-minute panic buy can do, then I’m up for a few more on August 31st. Such was his presence that when he did not play in the league, Arsenal did not win. A very good passer of the ball, Mikel has some of the best passing stats in the league, both in amount and accuracy. Mikel is also a good battler when he does not have the ball and wins his fair share of tackles for the team. His form was very good along side Songhino and this brought the best out of his team-mate, who at times when Mikel is not playing can look lost, though I feel Songhino ahs been trying to do two/three people’s jobs.

Mikel is the type of player that just gets on with it. Even when he looks quiet you know his is doing the right things, just keeping it simple. As the season progressed and Mikel grew Arsenal got better. The sort of player that makes those around him like Song, Ramsey and hopefully next season Wilshere look and play better.

Arteta is proof that if you look the right players are out there and you don’t have to spend £30m plus to get them. Football is a team game, not a game for individuals, unless they are Spectacular such as Messi, Ronaldo, Maradona types.

Marks out of 10 – (8)

@harlowgooner

Next up Arron Ramsey

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