Mikel Arteta Arsenal 2019-20Getty

Wilshere says 'unreal' Arteta will get the best out of Arsenal squad

Mikel Arteta will get the best out of his Arsenal squad if given time at the club, according to former Gunners team-mate Jack Wilshere.

Arsenal appointed former midfielder Arteta as manager in December 2019, and the Spaniard has set about steadying a ship which was sinking fast under Unai Emery.

Wilshere thinks Arsenal have a strong squad and, in Arteta, a manager who can utilise it properly.

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“They’ve got world-class players,” Wilshere said on Instagram Live with Sam Morgan.

“They spent £60 million on [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang, £40m on [Alexandre] Lacazette, [Mesut] Ozil is world class.

“I think they’ve got a good manager now who can get the best out of them.

"I think you need to give Arteta a transfer window and a pre-season."

Wilshere thinks the key to improving Arsenal’s fortunes is to solve their long-standing defensive issues, and he believes Arteta has made progress in this regard.

“Everyone who I’ve spoken to since leaving Arsenal or even when I was at Arsenal would say they wouldn’t mind playing against us because they knew they could get opportunities,” he added. “Going forward we were always a joke.

“I’m not just talking about the defence but defensively, as a team, they would get chances and I think Arteta has changed that a bit.”

Wilshere and Arteta spent five years as team-mates after Arteta joined Arsenal from Everton in 2011.

The Englishman says that in retrospect, Arteta’s level of discipline meant he was always likely to make it as a coach.

“When I was playing with him you don’t really think about that but, when I look back, you could tell,” Wilshere said.

“He was one of those guys in training who was always on it. He wouldn’t accept anything less than 100 per cent.

“Even if we were doing possession, he would try and base it around a game and try and talk to you about what we should be doing.

“Around the training ground he was first in, never late, he would do everything properly. His discipline was unreal.

“On the pitch as well, he was the leader for us. In the dressing room and around the place he wouldn’t get involved in any banter.

“His English was good, he knew the game, he was good. He was a big player for us.”