Arteta reveals ‘I doubted himself’ after Arsenal lost first three league games last season

Mikel Arteta reveals he ‘doubted himself’ after Arsenal’s loss to Brentford last season… but Gunners manager insists fierce self-criticism is ‘part of the journey’ as he aims the return of the Champions League

  • Arsenal were humiliated 2-0 by Brentford on the opening matchday of last season
  • It was the start of three straight defeats which left the Gunners bottom of the table
  • Arteta’s Arsenal have won five of their first six league games this season

Mikel Arteta has admitted he doubted himself after Arsenal lost their first three games last season.

The Spaniard returns to the Gtech Community Stadium in Brentford on Sunday with his side at the top of the Premier League.

It’s a far cry from 13 months ago when Arteta’s side were humiliated 2-0 by the Bees on matchday one of last season – the start of three straight defeats to start last campaign.

Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal have won five of their first six Premier League games this season

‘I doubted myself, I questioned myself,’ he told Sky Sports. “It’s part of a journey where – if you want to improve – you have to be self-critical.

“You need to have other people around you to tell you the truth and also have the humility to always be willing to improve, better yourself, and explore other opinions and ways of doing your job.”

These criticisms were difficult to manage. A wave of optimism last season turned into a “tsunami” of criticism, a metaphor coined by the Arsenal manager himself 12 months ago.

Arteta admitted he doubted himself after Arsenal lost their first three games last season

Arteta admitted he doubted himself after Arsenal lost their first three games last season

“Everything was piling up a lot,” Arteta recalled of the tidal wave of negativity. “The way everyone reacted after the first game of the season, it was huge.

“But it tells you the expectations of the football club you are at, how much passion and love there is for that club and how quickly you can change things.” You have to be prepared for this and you have to analyze why things are happening.

So what did he learn? “One of the big lessons was: stay calm in tough times, understand why things are happening, and move on.”

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