An unnamed Arsenal player is thought to have challenged manager Mikel Arteta in front of the rest of the rest of the Gunners squad, accusing the Spaniard of having favourites and further highlighting the already rumoured divides at the club.
Arsenal have had a disastrous season so far, languishing in the bottom half of the Premier League table – closer to a relegation battle than challenging for a top four place, and only back-to-back wins in recent games has prevented even more pressure being piled on Arteta.
Parts of the squad are rotten and the Spaniard has been keen to reset and build a new one.
Mesut Ozil has been completely banished this season, while other established pros like Shkodran Mustafi and Sead Kolasinac have also been pushed to the fringes to make way for new younger players. The latter has already been sent on loan to former club Schalke and more will leave.
It was reported in December that the Ozil situation has been a source of division in the squad, with a group of senior players said to be backing the 2014 World Cup winner.
Now, the Daily Mirror writes of the general discord and tensions spilling over in a team meeting. A ‘disaffected’ player is said to have confronted Arteta in front of the rest of the squad, demanding to know why some players appear to be treated differently to others.
Ahead of the club’s first game of 2021 against West Brom on Saturday night, Arteta has already confirmed his intention to get rid of surplus players in this month’s transfer window.
“We have a large squad. We knew that,” the boss explained. “A lot of things that should have happened in the summer we could not accomplish them for different reasons. We cannot sustain the numbers that we have in certain positions.
“There are some players that are going to go on loan and going to leave, and that is the priority. Then we will see if we have the right opportunity in the positions where we need some more help.”
Source : 90min